Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Housing - A fight against a claim for possession

Recently I came back from work quite late and found an e-mail from my client, who is facing a claim for possession, telling me that she had come back to her flat, found her belongings in the basement outside and the locks changed. The next day I went to the office early and drafted an application for re-instatement as well as a draft witness statement for the client.

We met at court. Unfortunately the court was down one judge. The single judge at court had his own list and then the list of the other judge to deal with. He had 5 summary trials to hear that day. After issuing the application in the court office we had to wait for the one available judge to look at the application, and when he did the court officer informed us that the case would be listed for the next day at 2.30pm, to allow time for service upon the landlord.

We left the court and I returned to the office to draft a letter of service which I then took round by hand to the registered address of the landlord, which is a limited company, without fax number or e mail. On the next day we attended court and obtained an order of re-instatement against the landlord, as well as an injunction, with the issue of damages adjourned to another date and costs summarily assessed at £3200.

The client is back home and the landlord's director a chastened man.

--Sebastian Peattie is a Solicitor in the Housing Department at Wainwright & Cummins

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