Evictions and tenants’ rights in Quebec

Updated May 3, 2023

Unsurprisingly, a tenant’s rights in Quebec are somewhat different than in other provinces. So, too, is the process that landlords must follow if they wish to end a tenant’s lease (often called an eviction, though the term is more specific in Quebec).

In this article, we’ll describe the different reasons for which a landlord in Quebec can remove a residential tenant, and the processes they have to follow to do so.

If there’s a term or concept here you’re not familiar with, you may want to check out our main eviction page to learn more, too.

Closeup of an eviction letter with Quebec flag

Tenant rights and responsibilities

In Quebec, tenants have a right to remain in their home as long as they continue to fulfil their responsibilities under their lease agreement (and the law, of course).

Éducaloi names these basic responsibilities for tenants in Quebec:

  • pay the rent mentioned in the lease on the date required by the lease
  • use the rental unit carefully and responsibly
  • make necessary minor repairs
  • to not change the form or destination (type of use) of your unit
  • when you move out, return the unit in the same condition as when you moved in
  • avoid disturbing the other tenants

Part of using the rental unit responsibly involves abiding by the terms of one’s lease agreement. That means, as always, paying rent on time. It also means not keeping pets if the lease forbids it, and not harming the rental property or other residents.

In Quebec, there are actually three different terms for what other provinces simply call “eviction:”

  • Terminating the lease. This is the term used then the tenant is removed for cause.
  • This term refers to the landlord removing the tenant so they (or a family member) can move in.
  • The actual term “eviction” refers to removing a tenant to complete a specific project, like renovation or demolition.

Here’s a brief rundown on how each works.

Terminating the lease

If a tenant isn’t meeting their obligations, the landlord may be able to terminate their lease. In order to terminate a lease for cause, the landlord must ask the Tribunal administratif du logement (TAL) to do so. The TAL will hold a hearing first, wherein they hear arguments from both the landlord and tenant before issuing an order.

When it comes to rent, it’s due when it’s due—but the landlord has to wait until it’s 3 weeks late until they go to the TAL to terminate the lease. The tenant can stop the lease cancellation by paying the outstanding rent at any time before the TAL issues a decision—even at the hearing itself.

For most other for-cause issues, the landlord is expected to give the tenant a reasonable chance to correct their behaviour. This often starts with a simple discussion. If the problem persists, the landlord should then give the tenant a demand letter explaining exactly which obligations they’re not fulfilling, and informing them that they will ask the TAL to terminate the lease if things don’t improve.

If, after formal warning, the issue still persists, the landlord can go to the TAL to ask for a hearing and termination of the lease. The landlord has to demonstrate that the tenant is causing serious harm, and the tenant will have the chance to argue their side, too.

After the hearing, the TAL can choose to:

  • terminate the lease and order the tenant to leave
  • order the tenant to comply with the rules but keep the lease in force
  • give the tenant a deadline to correct their behaviour before terminating the lease
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In other provinces, you’ll find terms like “landlord’s use” to describe a situation in which the landlord wants to remove a tenant so they, or a family member, can move into the rental unit. In Quebec, these situations are known as repossession.

One rule unique to Quebec is that a landlord can’t evict a tenant just because they’re selling the property. The tenant, and the lease they signed, are basically part of the deal for the buyer. The buyer can later remove the tenant under the typical repossession rules (or any of the other reasons we’re outlining here).

A landlord may repossess a rental unit if they want to move in themselves, or have their children or parents move in. They can also have another relative or ex-spouse move in, if the landlord is that person’s main source of support.

There are many further restrictions, however. Co-owners can’t repossess an apartment unless they’re also partners. A landlord can’t repossess a unit if they own a similar unit that is presently available. If the landlord is a company, they can never repossess a rental unit. If the tenant is a low-income senior that has lived in the unit at least 10 years, the landlord cannot repossess their unit.

If a landlord is repossessing a unit for a valid reason, they must give advance notice. For leases of less than six months, they need to give 1 month of notice. For leases over six months, they must give six months’ notice. In either case, they can’t repossess the unit before the lease expires.

If the lease is of indeterminate length, the landlord must give six months’ notice, but they can give this notice at any time.

Upon receiving notice of repossession, the tenant has one month to accept or refuse. If they accept, they have until the repossession date to move out. If they refuse, the landlord can either rescind the notice and let the tenant stay, or apply to the TAL for permission to repossess the unit. The tenant and landlord may also wish to negotiate a settlement to end the lease.

If it gets as far as a TAL hearing, the landlord must demonstrate that they want to repossess the unit for a valid reason (specifically, the reason they’ve stated on the notice). If the TAL grants the repossession, they may attach conditions, such as the landlord paying the tenant’s moving expenses.

If a tenant moves out of a repossessed apartment, but feels that the landlord acted in bad faith, they can apply to the TAL for compensation. For example, if the landlord removed a tenant to move in themselves, but the former tenant learns that a new tenant has moved in, it would appear as though the landlord was acting in bad faith.


In Quebec, eviction is the term used when a landlord wants to remove a tenant for any of the following reasons:

  • To subdivide the unit (for example, turning a large apartment into two small apartments)
  • To demolish the unit
  • To enlarge the unit substantially
  • To change the unit’s use (for example, converting it into commercial space)

The rules for eviction are much the same as those for repossession: 6 months’ notice for leases of at least six months or indeterminate leases, or 1 month’s notice for leases under six months. The landlord can’t end a fixed-term lease early for eviction, except by agreement with the tenant. The same rules for low-income seniors apply, too.

The difference is that when a landlord evicts a tenant, they will owe the tenant compensation: three months’ rent, plus all reasonable moving costs. The tenant should keep proofs of all their moving expenses, like truck rentals, utility transfer fees, boxes, and so on. Once the move is complete, they can submit the proof to the landlord for compensation.

Once again, the tenant can accept or refuse the eviction notice—they have one month to do so. If they refuse, the landlord must apply for a TAL hearing, at which they have to prove that they intend to do as they wrote on the notice. The TAL will either refuse or grant the eviction based on the hearing.

Just as with repossession, a tenant who believes they were evicted in bad faith can file with the TAL to sue the landlord for damages.

Home insurance considerations

Tenant insurance in Quebec is not required by law. Nevertheless, tenants should be aware that their landlord is still allowed to require it as a condition of the rental agreement. If the lease agreement specifies that a tenant must remain insured, they would be in breach of the agreement if they let their tenant insurance lapse.

Another insurance-related item to consider: If a tenant has legal protection insurance from Square One, they would be able to access the legal helpline for guidance on the eviction.

Commonly asked questions

Can you be evicted in the winter in Quebec?

In Quebec, as in other provinces, there is no restriction on evicting tenants during the winter. As long as the landlord follows the law and the correct procedures, they can end a tenancy during any season.

Does a tenant have to move out when the landlord sells their house?

In Quebec, selling a rental property isn’t a valid reason to evict a tenant (at least, not on its own). If the buyer wishes to live in the house, then that would be a valid reason, and they’d have to follow the process of repossession. But, if the new owner intends to continue renting the unit out, they would simply assume the residential lease and associated responsibilities from the selling landlord.

Want to learn more? Visit our Renter resource centre for more tips and information about life as a renter. Or, get an online quote in under 5 minutes and find out how affordable personalized home insurance can be.


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