Claiming service charge refund from freeholder; freehold sold before tribunal hearing

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Claiming service charge refund from freeholder; freehold sold before tribunal hearing

    I am a long-leaseholder in a residential block. I applied to the First Tier Tribunal (formerly the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal) a few weeks ago for a determination as to the reasonableness of service charges and administration charges that I have already paid, on the basis that (among other things) the freeholder and his managing agent have been unable to provide evidence of expenditure as required by the LTA. The hearing is due to be held in early December, but in the meantime the Respondent sold the freehold of the building and the managing agent has been replaced. (They still appear to be engaging in proceedings, however - exchanging statements and documents etc.)

    On the assumption that I'm awarded most of what I'm claiming at the hearing, I'm wondering if the fact that the Respondent is no longer the freeholder will be a problem. That is, would I have to pursue the ex-freeholder for the money, or will I be able to claim it from the new freeholder given that it's a refund of amounts paid to the Respondent in his capacity as freeholder?

    If the former, I suspect he will be untraceable (foreign name, no online record of him at all etc), so I would prefer to be able to claim it from the new freeholder if possible. Can decisions of the Tribunal be applied against whoever happens to be the freeholder from time to time, or only against the person named as the Respondent in the case? Should I (or can I) join the new freeholder as a co-respondent?

    All thoughts welcome!

    #2
    You should ask the FTT Office if the new freeholder can be added.

    Comment


      #3
      The new freeholder takes over the responsibilities of the lease and you will be able to argue that you have paid service charges in advance. It will become his responsibility to recover any service charge monies from the previous freeholder.

      Comment


        #4
        Thanks both.
        eagle2 - I agree that lease obligations are assumed by the new freeholder, but this will be a legal judgment rather than a lease obligation (albeit arising from a lease dispute) so I'm not convinced I can use that argument.
        Gordon999 - I could try that, although in my experience the FTT office usually reply to questions with a standard "we can't give advice" statement...

        Comment


          #5
          It depends on the wording of the FTT decision but I would expect the Tribunal to reduce your service charge liability for previous years which would mean that you have overpaid and you would be able to offset the sum against future service charges.

          The FTT is not advising if you ask the new freeholder to be added. There could be a problem with short notice if the hearing is set for early December.

          Comment

          Latest Activity

          Collapse

          Working...
          X