Tenant Dispute Resolution
The dispute resolution process used by the PRTB (Private Residential Tenancies Board) is confidential, supportive and non-confrontational. Landlords, tenants, or other parties directly affected (e.g. neighbours) can initiate the dispute resolution process. Landlords must be registered with the PRTB to use the dispute resolution service.
The service covers disputes about deposits, lease terms, termination of tenancies, rent arrears, market rents, complaints by neighbours, breaches of statutory obligations by either landlord or tenant and any other matters related to the tenancy. The Board can also deal with disputes about the terms of a lease, or other tenancy agreement that are not specified in the Act. It should not be necessary to have legal representation when taking a case to the PRTB.
The process consists of two stages:
- Stage 1 is confidential mediation* or adjudication** (the parties can decide which method they prefer).
- Stage 2 is a public hearing by a three-person Tenancy Tribunal.
If the parties do not wish to accept the decision of the mediator, or the adjudicator, then the dispute can be appealed to the Tenancy Tribunal within 21 days. A mediated agreement or the decision of the adjudicator or the Tribunal results in a determination order from the Board. Decisions made by the Tribunal can only be appealed to the High Court on a point of law. Enforcement of determination orders is through the Circuit Court.
* Mediation means that the parties are helped to come to an agreement together.
** Adjudication means that the adjudicator makes a decision that may or may not reflect any agreement reached between the parties. The parties then decide whether they are willing to accept this decision.