MA started Section 20 Major Works proceedings AFTER RTM application

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    MA started Section 20 Major Works proceedings AFTER RTM application

    Hi all

    We applied for RTM in Dec 2017, and then again in June 2018. About a week after our second application, our MA triggered a section 20 major works notification and employed the services of a surveyor to produce a spec. We objected to this and said that it wasn't appropriate to trigger major works with RTM in progress. They effectively said that until RTM was complete, they still managed the building and would do what they had to. This was in 2018.

    Now it's 2019 we have our RTM, but I've received a £400 balancing charge for the year 2018. The additional costs appear to be for the surveyor which we told them not to employ.

    Is it worth me applying to FTT for a determination as to whether or not this is payable? I don't dispute that the surveying work was done, I dispute that it was either necessary or appropriate.

    #2
    Can you not simply ignore the demand? I assume that the freeholder and its agent no longer has access to the service charge funds. It is unlikely that the freeholder will use its own monies to pursue the debt. If it does pursue the claim, the burden of proof would be on the freeholder. If you apply to the FTT, the burden of proof is on you.

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by eagle2 View Post
      Can you not simply ignore the demand? I assume that the freeholder and its agent no longer has access to the service charge funds. It is unlikely that the freeholder will use its own monies to pursue the debt. If it does pursue the claim, the burden of proof would be on the freeholder. If you apply to the FTT, the burden of proof is on you.
      Quite possible. I'm not quite trying to get out of paying - if this is a reasonable request for payment then I'll most likely pay it - I just want to see if this is a fair request, doesn't feel like it to me but I may be biased

      Comment


        #4
        Considering your history with the freeholder, I would have thought that you had paid enough already.

        It probably depends on how urgent the works were, could they have been delayed reasonably? Were the costs incurred before or after you objected? If that is your only objection to the costs, it is probably not worth starting an application to the FTT, you would have the costs and your time to consider. You should consider whether or not the freeholder would take legal action against you, it would not be worth his while either, especially if he does not have access to the service charge funds to finance the costs.

        Your options seem to be - pay the bill, challenge it via the FTT, wait for the freeholder to take action, or make an offer of settlement (50%?)

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by eagle2 View Post
          Considering your history with the freeholder, I would have thought that you had paid enough already.

          It probably depends on how urgent the works were, could they have been delayed reasonably? Were the costs incurred before or after you objected? If that is your only objection to the costs, it is probably not worth starting an application to the FTT, you would have the costs and your time to consider. You should consider whether or not the freeholder would take legal action against you, it would not be worth his while either, especially if he does not have access to the service charge funds to finance the costs.

          Your options seem to be - pay the bill, challenge it via the FTT, wait for the freeholder to take action, or make an offer of settlement (50%?)
          Ha well I agree with you personally but I also believe in fair play - it's one of my greatest weaknesses. The major works never actually got done - we got our RTM before they began - so this is just literally the surveyor costs involved in drawing up the spec which never got delivered.

          Comment


            #6
            It is a pity that your freeholder and agent doesn't also believe in fair play.

            If you can use the spec then it may be worth offering to pay for it on condition that you receive it, If you have not received the benefit of a service then you can argue that there is nothing to pay.

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