Another in Nearly Legal’s sporadic attempts at being helpful to passing internet searchers. All the questions are genuine searches from the logs, including the rather puzzling ‘crinoline flint’, which perhaps gives more insight into the searcher than one might want. As ever, none of what follows constitutes legal advice and you should always consult a specialist solicitor before taking any steps.
So, by theme:
disrepair protocol costs
…are part of a claim. May I direct you to our post on Birmingham v Lee on recoverability of protocol costs where works are done pre-issue.
living in unihabitable property and the consequences for landlords
I would imagine a pretty substantial disrepair claim against them, depending on why the property is supposedly uninhabitable.
appeal housing flood
Appeal? Why appeal? Was there a claim? Floods are tricky things, though. Liability depends on the source and the cause. Landlords will usually be liable for the water supply and fittings in the property, but not where another tenant has caused the flood. The other tenant is then liable. But it is worth considering that even if the flood was caused by an upstairs tenant, if it has done damage to the structure of your property, the landlord is liable for that disrepair.
mice infestation qualifies as disrepair
By and large, no. An infestation of mice may count as nuisance, if they can be shown to be accessing the property from an area under the landlord’s control (common areas, service ducts etc.), which effectively rules out houses, or ground floor flats. An infestation might be part of a disrepair claim as a consequence of disrepair – if entry is gained through disrepair. Otherwise, nuisance is the best bet.
can i withhold rent disrepair
Only in very limited circumstances: where the landlord has been notified of the works required for which the landlord is responsible; failed to do them in a reasonable time; has been notified by the tenant that unless the works are done by a specified date, the tenant will do them, the landlord has been provided with an estimate of the costs and the tenant has notified the landlord that the costs will be deducted from the rent. The tenant can then deduct those costs and only those costs from the rent. Was that what you had in mind? I thought not. Otherwise, you cannot withhold rent and may face possession proceedings if you do. Compensation for disrepair is virtually always less than the rent in any event.
bed bugs tenancy agreement london
One of many, many searches on bed bugs. The trouble is that it is very unlikely that the landlord will be liable, or responsible for stopping the infestation. It is hard to claim nuisance, as it is very difficult to establish that the source of the infestation is an area under the landlord’s control. It will be a very rare tenancy agreement that would make the landlord responsible for stopping an infestation. For these reasons, it is also not a justification for breaking a tenancy agreement.
can the council in ealing evict me from my secured tenancy 3 bedroom house if my last son moves out
Probably not. Possession claims for under occupation can only be brought in very limited circumstances, where the tenant is a successor (but not to their spouse or civil partner) and notice was served between 6 and 12 months after the succession. Suitable alternative accommodation has to be available and it has to be reasonable for the Court to make the order. Note that this applies to secure tenancies only. Those with assured tenancies (eg, most housing association tenancies) can face possession proceedings if they refuse suitable alternative accommodation and suitable accommodation is available at the possession hearing.
staying a warrant mandatory ground
No. Can’t do it.
what happens when a tolerated trespasser clears arrears and court cost
At the moment, nothing, except , by and large, they lose the ability to apply to the court to revive the tenancy [Edit Feb 09 – the House of Lords Judgment in White v Knowsley has now changed this. A tolerated trespasser who has paid off all the arrears can apply to Court to revive their tenancy, or rarely and depending on the wording of the original order, may already have their tenancy automatically revive]. Equally, the landlord can’t enforce the possession order. There is no new tenancy unless the landlord decides to give one. These are what has become known as entrenched trespassers. This should change when some sections of the Housing & Regeneration Act 2008 come into force. Trespassers should get a ‘replacement’ tenancy automatically. Much more on this when it happens, which should be in April 2009. The whole thing remains messy – get specialist advice and bring your possession order with you (see the comments below).
3. Homelessness issues
caselaw ending interim accommodation with reasonable notice
You’ll be wanting Conville v London Borough of Richmond-Upon-Thames  EWCA Civ 718.
legal rights when 1 party wants out of a mortgage leaving 1 person homeless
A joint mortgage? The other person can’t just get out of the mortgage. They can stop paying, which, although it would leave a claim against them, obviously makes the situation practically difficult. In a joint mortgage you are each liable for any and all of the mortgage payments. Can you end up losing the property? Yes – so you should get advice on your position as soon as possible, as it can be complex.
powerpoint on homelessness law uk
A bit lazy, no?
small claims defence southwark public funding
Very doubtful. Public funding is not available for small claims, with very limited exceptions.
how much legal aid is released to solicitors dealing with housing issues
Err. Do you mean for a case – then it depends. Or do you mean what part of the civil legal aid budget this year goes to housing matters? That I don’t know, off hand. In any case, legal aid is not ‘released’ to solicitors – they don’t get the money ahead of doing the work (in fact usually not for quite some time afterwards), and the LSC sets strict limits on the amount of work that can be done. The solicitor has to apply for and justify each increase in the limit. Then their bill is assessed at the end.
public funding cost of works disrepair
In order to be a potential fast track matter and so get public funding, the rule is that where there are works required either the cost of works or the likely damages must be over £1000. So if the damages are over £1000, the only requirement is that there are works outstanding, the works do not have to be over £1000 in cost.