Possession claim defeated where council claimed subletting.

Tenant shows that flat was his main and principle home.

In this case the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham issued possession proceedings against the client alleging that the client had been in breach of Section 93 of the Housing Act 1985. Further that the client had failed to use the premises as his main or principal home as he was subletting. The client denied the allegations.

Our client had employed a handyman when he first moved in. The council now seemed to belive that it was this  person who lived in the flat and not our client. This came about because the tenant had allowed his handyman  to use the address for mail  as he was homeless and in the process of applying for a UK passport.

Right to buy

The council’s attention was raised when our client applied to exercise his right to buy. His application was not accepted as it was claimed that he was not residing in the premises.  This allegation  of subletting was based on  links between the  handyman and  various council and government databases.  It seemed that the handyman had been using the address for more than just a passport application and there were links to other services. The consequence of this was that our client’s landlord concluded he did not live in his flat and had sublet it.

The defence

Moss & Co prepared a defence and witness statements. They obtained evidence to show that the client used the premises as his main and principal home. Further that he was not subletting and that he  had always used the premises in that way. The matter was listed for a two-day trial but prior to the trial the council agreed that as long as the client continued to use the premises as his main and principal home that the possession proceedings would be struck out automatically by 20 November 2019.

The client therefore retained his home.

Housing law expert Parveen Akhtar

Parveen Akhtar housing law expert

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