Legal help, services and support for private residential landlords
Legal Cases Round-up – March 2021
March 25, 2021
As a landlord or letting agent, you may not be aware of the legal cases which impact on your business.
But it is important to know about them. They perform two important roles:
1. They set precedents on the regulations that govern landlord law
The regulations dictate the law, but the cases show how the regulations will be interpreted by the courts in real life situations.
However, case precedents are not set in stone. The precise interpretation of the regulations can change depending on each cases’ individual circumstance.
That being said, precedents can often have a persuasive effect and so should be considered as the court’s ‘plan of thinking’
2. Cases can also show current trends in the interpretation of the law
For example, if numerous cases which have similar facts are all held in a similar way, this will show a trend and indicate how a court will likely adjudicate.
Even though many of those cases may not, strictly speaking, set a legal precedent as they will be County Court or Tribunal decisions.
This can be useful for landlords, as if they find themselves in a similar situation to these cases, they can understand what the current legal train of thought is, and what the likely outcome would be if they took legal action.
The Landlord Law Service and the list
While there is a Legal Cases section on Landlord Law where you can find case reports, this post is to bring to your attention several important cases over the past six months.
To find out more about each case, click the link which (if you are a logged in Landlord Law member) will take you to the case report.
Ficarra & ORS v James – This case relates to Rent Repayment Order’s and how much a landlord can be charged as a maximum penalty.
Rakusen v Jepsen — This case is about who is liable to pay a rent repayment order imposed in respect of an HMO property which was sublet to tenants – should it be the head landlord or the immediate landlord?
IR Management Services ltd v Salford City Council– This case looks at Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO) and considers whether ignorance of the law and the requirement for landlords to obtain an HMO license can provide a valid defence to the Local Authority’s penalty charge.