Government announcements

Published on Sun, 9th Apr 2017 09:33

The DCLG announced some amendments to the law as a consequence of the 2016 Housing and Planning Act.

The main one is that Local Authorities now have the abilty to choose whether to prosecute a landlord through the court, or issu a Civil Penalty for certain offences.  The difference is that the Local Authority can keep the charge made under a Civil Penalty - and this can be up to £30,000.  Details can be seen here, but the notices covered by this are:-

  • Failure to comply with an Improvement Notice (section 30);
  • Offences in relation to licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation (section 72);
  • Offences in relation to licensing of houses under Part 3 of the Act (section 95);
  • Offences of contravention of an overcrowding notice (section 139)
  • Failure to comply with management regulations in respect of Houses in Multiple Occupation (section 234).

The second announcement is an extension of Rent Repayment Orders, originlly brought in by the 2004 Housing Act.  Details can be seen here, but the notices covered by this are:-

  • Failure to comply with an Improvement Notice under section 30 of the Housing Act 2004;  
  • Failure to comply with a Prohibition Order under section 32 of the Hosing Act 2004;
  • Breach of a banning order made under section 21 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016; 3
  • Using violence to secure entry to a property under section 6 of the Criminal Law Act 1977; and  
  • Illegal eviction or harassment of the occupiers of a property under section 1 of the Protection from Eviction Act 1977.

And finally (as if that wasn't enough), Local Authorities now have the ability to obtain information from Tenancy Deposit Schemes.  It is intended to allow Local Authorities to find HMO's because of multiple deposits held.  Details can be found here.