BBC Panorama to debate Section 21 no-fault eviction featuring Landlord Action

BBC Panorama to debate Section 21 no-fault eviction featuring Landlord Action

This week, BBC Panorama (Wednesday 21 February at 20:30) investigates the widely debated Section 21 no-fault eviction procedure and whether tenants deserve more protection, or whether new rules would make the housing crisis worse. The show will feature leading tenant eviction company, Landlord Action, highlighting the real reasons landlords turn to Section 21.

Instances of what have come to be known as `no-fault evictions’ are reported to have trebled in the last eight years. BBC’s investigative journalist, Richard Bilton, aims to shed light on the difficulties faced by many private tenants in the UK, who have no long-term right to stay in their homes, and can be ordered to leave with little by the way of notice or explanation.

Richard meets some of the people whose lives have been plunged into chaos by their landlords but also talks to landlords who feel Section 21 is their only option. Britain depends on the private sector, and ‘no fault evictions’ feel like a lifeline for Britain’s millions of landlords.

Panorama interviewed Paul Shamplina, Founder of Landlord Action, and their senior solicitor, Emma Philips, about the rise of section 21 no-fault evictions. Commenting on the program, Mr Shamplina says:

“When asked to appear on Panorama, I felt a necessity to present the landlords’ side on why so many use no-fault Section 21. The term ‘no fault’ is really a bit of a red herring. There is always a reason why a landlord ends a tenancy, but it’s a far cry from the headlines showing that landlords use it just to throw tenants out. If a landlord has a good tenant, the last thing they want to do is get rid of a them. However, in our experience, the main reasons for serving Section 21 notices are for rent arrears, tenants requesting to be evicted so they can be re-housed or, most recently, because landlords wish to sell their property owing to impending tax liabilities.”

New tenancy rules introduced in December 2017 ended the contentious practice of no-fault evictions in Scotland. Following this, Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn said his party’s next manifesto will include a pledge to scrap no-fault evictions in England.

Shamplina adds: “There are some very good tenants out there. Sadly in some cases, they are being evicted through no fault of their own but rather because of their landlords’ circumstances, which must be very upsetting. However, in my opinion, the abolition of Section 21 in England would compound the housing shortage.”

Watch Panorama on BBC One, Wednesday 21st February, 20:30.

Precise Treatment Reduces Pain

Detail needs experts. Expert time is worth it when it saves you a costly mistake. Main objective: Get the property back. Best action: Very precise treatment.

Serving a notice is actually the most important part of the possession process.

It isn’t complicated but one tiny error can cause dreadful problems.

That’s why we say, don’t DIY and don’t use internet amateurs. It’s not worth it.

1. Compliance Errors
If the tenant doesn’t leave at Step1, the notice had better be valid. Because then it has to go to court. Any little error can get a case thrown out. And you have to start all over again.

2. Attempting Short-Cuts.
In an effort to be quick, some internet services aimed at landlords are using short-cuts around the process. But if the tenant doesn’t leave (50%) these practices can backfire at court and the case thrown out.

3. Trying to Save Pennies.
Internet services have mushroomed and landlords can expect to get what they pay for. To get the process done PROPERLY it takes a certain amount of time for an expert to look over a file and be accurate. Our fees cover that expert time.

Chasing courts for dates, arranging advocates and preparing court papers is time consuming. Especially if you’ve never done it before.

Some landlord and agents have served notices themselves. They believed they were saving a few pounds but it often ended up costing them more.

If you lose a claim, the court can order you to pay the tenant’s defence cost, which can run to hundreds or thousands of pounds.

Our in-house Solicitors are there to get your property back as fast as they can. And we protect landlords and agents from themselves.

As experts, we know that in the rush to get things done, errors can happen. And those errors can can come back later to mess up your case – and the whole process has to start again.

You can speed things up – give us accurate information quickly. Help us to help you.

There are services on the web who will prepare papers BUT they get you to pay the court-fee separately and get you to sign the court papers – so in fact they don’t represent you!

If your notice (at Step1) wasn’t drafted or served correctly you risk wasting your court fees and losing a whole lot of time because of a small error.

We won’t let your case anywhere near a court until we have checked every little detail. To make sure you don’t waste time or money, at Step-2 we first only charge part of the fee.

If your notice is fine, then you just pay the balance of the fee and we issue the claim. If there is a problem with your notice or paperwork, we will advise you what to do next.

Courts take the view that possession proceedings can make someone homeless. So they are very careful. If there’s any error in the notice, they throw the case out. It’s the process. Get it right or lose.

If the notice is invalid, you have to start all over again. The weeks or months you’ve waited are wasted. If there were rent arrears, there are now more.

If there weren’t rent arrears, they might now start. More fees. More lost rent. And still no possession. Tenants can be alerted to making a counter-claim.

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