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Tenants can end a residential tenancy agreement without financial penalty if they get a Certificate Confirming Grounds to Terminate Tenancy, and use it to give notice to their landlord.
To get a certificate, tenants can either submit an existing court order, or a signed statement from an authorized person declaring the tenant is a victim of domestic violence.
This statement must be one of the following:
- signed Certified Professional Statement form, or
- signed written statement
See the Guidelines for professionals: Understanding domestic violence below.
Persons authorized to provide a statement under the Residential Tenancies Act include regulated members of the:
- College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta
- College and Association of Registered Nurses of Alberta,
- Alberta College of Social Workers,
- College of Alberta Psychologists, or
- College of Registered Psychiatric Nurses of Alberta
The Act also authorizes the following persons:
- a police officer or a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police
- an individual employed and authorized by an agency or organization that provides:
- accommodation in an emergency
- transitional shelter because of homelessness or abuse
- support initiatives for victims of crime
Certified Professional Statement
If you’re authorized under the Act to provide a statement, a tenant may ask you to sign a form which they will provide to you.
Download a Certified Professional Statement form (PDF, 113 KB)
Instead of signing a Certified Professional Statement form, you may choose to write your own statement for a victim of domestic violence.
Your statement must include the following declarations:
- As an authorized professional under the Act, I can provide a written statement.
- I have assessed the information provided by the client and have determined he/she is a victim of domestic violence as outlined under the definitions in the Guidelines for Professionals: Understanding Domestic Violence.
- I affirm that the client has reported a risk to the safety of their self, the client’s dependent child or a protected adult who lives with the client if the tenancy continues.
The statement should also include your printed name, your signature and the date.
Guidelines for professionals: Understanding domestic violence
What does domestic violence look like?
Domestic violence may include all of the following behaviours: physical abuse, psychological abuse, criminal harassment/stalking, forced confinement, verbal abuse, sexual abuse, financial abuse, spiritual abuse, or any injury or property damage that intimidates or causes harm to a person.
- pushed, shoved or kicked
- slapped or bitten
- hit or punched
- locked out or deny access to the home
- denied help when ill, injured or pregnant
- weapon or objects used against the individual
- by physical force, not being allowed to leave
- abandoned in a dangerous situation
Emotional and Psychological Abuse
- threatened to harm the individual, their family or pets
- beliefs, race, heritage, class, religion, or sexual orientation ridiculed
- manipulated with lies and contradictions
- being convinced they are to blame for the abuse
- forced to have sex or watch sexual acts
- forced to perform sexual acts or have sexual acts performed on them
- forced to have sex after a physical assault, when they are ill or as a condition of the relationship
- denied access to bank accounts, credit cards or vehicle
- partner controls all of the finances
- prevented from getting or keeping a job or from going to school
- limits access to health, prescription or dental insurance
Domestic violence is committed by:
- a spouse or partner
- a current or past interdependent adult partner
- a person they are or have dated
- a person that has care and custody over them pursuant to an order of a court
- the biological or adoptive parent of one or more children with that person, regardless of their marital status
- a person related by blood, marriage or adoption
For more information
See FAQ Professional Authorized Statement (PDF, 299 KB)
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