Legal Support for Landlords
We have teamed up with property law specialists Landlord Action to provide legal support for our property management clients.
The need for legal support comes when a tenancy isn’t going as expected, perhaps the tenants are in arrears or aren’t looking after the property. This is where the quick, effective and legal services of Landlord Action come into play. Their main objective is to secure quick possession so that the property can be re-let with the minimum of downtime. They have a streamlined process without sacrificing accuracy so that positive outcomes are achieved quickly and cost-effectively. Their team consists of Solicitors, legal caseworkers and paralegals who provide a bespoke service ensuring you are supported throughout the legal process.
Legal Services Available:
- Removal of Trespassers / Squatters – Landlord Action will arrange for the urgent drafting of proceedings to be issued at court and represent the landlord until vacate possession is obtained.
- HMO disputes – Should you face any issues with letting a HMO property, Landlord Action can assist and act on your behalf.
- Forfeiture Proceedings – If you wanted to forfeit the lease, because of non-payment of rent arrears or service charges, Landlord Action’s in-house solicitor can act on your behalf, to gain payment or possession.
- Debt Recovery – After a money order has been obtained, Landlord Action’s debt-recovery team can advise on the options for recovery of arrears at a fixed fee.
- General Litigation – If you encounter any contractual or partnership dispute, Landlord Action can offer advice and act on your behalf.
When possession proceedings become necessary to clear and re-let a property there are two routes available – Section 8 Notices and Section 21 Notices.
Step 1: Serving Notice
A Section 8 Notice enables a landlord to seek possession of the property at any time, for some type of tenancy breach by the tenant.
The Notice must be filled out and served to all tenants without fault, to be valid. First class proof of postage is standard, but we recommend hand delivery, with a witness.
Once the Notice has expired (14 to 28 days depending on the unresolved grounds) a possession order from the Court can be applied for. Ideally, the tenant pays/vacates, preventing court action.
Step 2: Court Proceedings
Landlord Action issue claims on the PCOL (Possession Claims Online) system, which speeds up the hearing process (4 – 8 weeks). They will attend as the landlord’s advocate, and recommend the agent also attends to give evidence. If the tenant does not attend/defend, the court may grant possession. If contested, a further hearing will be set and, if possession is granted, this can take between 2 and 6 weeks.
Step 3: Eviction
If the tenant(s) do not vacate following the possession order, Landlord Action will use PCOL to obtain an immediate online warrant of possession and arrange for a bailiff to carry out an eviction. They always seek to transfer the case to the High Court as this will accelerate the eviction process.
Step 1: Serving Notice
A Section 21 Notice is a ‘no-fault’ process that can be used to end the tenancy without reason. Assuming your paperwork is in order, possession of the property is guaranteed but, as well as the Deregulation Act 2015 adding extra complications, the whole process can now take between 16-21 weeks.
Step 2: Accelerated Notice
Regaining possession of your property to allow you to let it is our priority. Where possible we would recommend undergoing an Accelerated Notice process as it does speed up the process. If the tenant doesn’t leave by the date on the notice, the landlord applies to the Court. Because the tenant is not being accused of anything there is no court hearing; a judge simply reviews the papers submitted by the landlord (for an average 90 seconds!) and, if everything is in order, possession is granted.
Step 3: Eviction
If the tenant(s) do not vacate following the possession order, Landlord Action will apply to the Court for a warrant of possession and arrange for a bailiff to carry out an eviction. They always seek to transfer the case to the High Court as this will accelerate the eviction process.
In all possession proceedings Landlord Action will ensure that all documentation is correct, that all dates and times are met and that everything follows the correct legal procedures to help you gain possession of your property as swiftly and cost-effectively as possible.
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