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NLA Want HMO License Fee Refunds For Landlords

NLA Want HMO License Fee Refunds For Landlords

HMO landlords Wrongly Charged Licensing Fees By Local Authorities

The National Landlords Association (NLA) has demanded that landlords affected by the outcomes from three specific judgments involving English local authorities and HMO landlords.

The NLA have written to all local authorities in England asking them to contact any affected HMO landlords, informing them of their right to the appropriate refunds and providing details of how they may make a claim, after recent court judgements clarified some issues surrounding the mandatory licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) and how local authorities determine HMO licensing fees.

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Superstrike Case Causes Confusion

Superstrike Case Causes Confusion

Lord Justice Lloyd delivered judgement on an appeal from Wandsworth County Court for the case of Superstrike Ltd v Marino Rodrigues on the 14th June 2013 and since then conflicting advice has been offered by different landlord associations.

The Residential Landlords Association (RLA) told its members that they will be issuing updates shortly, after they have sought advice from its deposit protection partner the Tenancy Deposit Scheme (TDS).

By contrast, the National Landlords Association (NLA), who have business links with MyDeposits and the UK Association of Letting Agents (UKALA) have condemned the speculation and online reporting of the case.

The NLA issued advice to members stating that the Superstrike case also only relates to landlords within a particular timeframe, who used Section 21 notices. In reality the case will have little effect on landlords and insist that the ruling only pertains to tenancies started before April 6, 2007, and which have subsequently become periodic.

The NLA are discussing the matter with officials responsible for tenancy deposit protection (TDP) legislation within the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) and legal professionals.

It is important to understand that appeal judges only consider the case presented to them, not a similar set of circumstances, or a variation on a theme.

The precedent they set is therefore only applicable to cases subject to the same set of circumstances. This fact is crucial in this instance as the case of Superstrike Ltd v Rodrigues is not representative of all landlords or private tenancies.

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NLA and UKALA Call For Clarity Over Tenancy Deposit Protection Law

NLA and UKALA Call For Clarity Over Tenancy Deposit Protection Law

NLA And UKALA Call For Clarity Over
Tenancy Deposit Protection Law

NLA / UKALA press release:

The National Landlords Association (NLA) and the UK Association of Letting Agents (UKALA) are jointly calling for clarity amid speculation about the impact of the recent Court of Appeal judgement in the case between Superstrike Ltd and Marino Rodrigues.

The judgement of 14 June 2013 is the latest in a long line of appeal cases to cast doubt on landlords’ responsibility to protect tenants’ deposits.

In the case of Superstrike Ltd and Marino Rodrigues, the Lord Justice Lloyd’s conclusion has raised significant questions about the status of long-term periodic tenancies which began prior to the introduction of tenancy deposit protection (TDP).

Richard Lambert, CEO of the NLA, said: “It is understandable that landlords are concerned about this case, and the potential impact it could have on those who find that they have unintentionally failed to comply with tenancy deposit protection legislation as a result of Lord Justice Lloyd’s ruling. However, they must remember that this judgement only applies to a very specific set of circumstances, meaning that most landlords will be unaffected. Although it is likely to affect relatively few tenancies, the NLA’s real concern in this matter is that, once again, professional landlords, following government guidance on how to comply with the law, have been caught out by the unintended consequences of the Housing Act 2004. The Government must act swiftly to reassure the industry that law-abiding landlords will not face sanctions as a result of this new interpretation of the rules. We’ve written to the Housing Minister calling on him to take urgent action to re-assert the spirit of the law on tenancy deposit protection and restore fairness to the system which was designed to ensure it.”

Caroline Kenny, UKALA Chief Executive, said: “UKALA is troubled that once again tenancy deposit protection rules appear to have been thrown into disarray by the Court of Appeal. Landlords and their agents simply trying to understand and comply with the law will be rightly disillusioned by yet another reconsideration of ‘the right way to protect a deposit’. We hope to see this matter taken to the Supreme Court so that clarity can be achieved once and for all. In the meantime, the industry is in desperate need of guidance from the Government about how to treat affected deposits.”

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