Section 20B

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    Section 20B

    Our landlord did not issue the service charge accounts of expenditure for 1 jan to 31 dec 2018 till 2 July 2020. This was outside the 18 month limit. Does that mean the landlord cannot demand the service charge for that year?
    All we received was a budget of anticipated costs.

    #2
    Ive found from other leaseholders that a section 20 b notice was emailed to them on 16 April 2020

    Comment


      #3
      I presume you didn't mind maintenance being carried out.
      Maybe you can ask for time to pay if it's unexpected ?

      Comment


        #4
        We have paid for an estimated service charge that more than covers the actual expenditure. However , if the law states that the landlord cannot charge us because they have not followed the legally required proceedure in the time demanded then the charge cannot be made?

        Comment


          #5
          The landlord can demand and charge whatever he likes just as the lessee has the right to contest the charge and ultimately take it to FTT.
          Good luck with that.
          If you have some legitimate query on the charges then please let us know, if you just want to avoid paying on a technicality then you probably won't get much sympathy on a Landlord forum.

          Comment


            #6
            Had the freeholder acted in a correct way in previous years we would not even be thinking of this.
            Im on this site as I am a landlord as well.
            Why should we need good luck at a tribunal?

            Comment


              #7
              Because the outcome of tribunal hearing are less predictable then spread betting when your time and costs are fully factored in to the end result. Plus a long wait.

              Comment


                #8
                You are lucky to receive service charge accounts, the worst landlords issue unreasonable estimated service charges and never adjust them. The answer to your question is only an additional charge raised after the 18 months limit could be challenged, so if there was a deficit for the accounting period, you may be able to object. Even then, it would depend on how the deficit arose, whether or not you were or ought to have been aware of the expenditure. I would not recommend applying to a Tribunal on that point alone, it is something which may be raised if you are challenging the reasonableness of the charges,

                Comment


                  #9
                  Where are the audited service charge accounts for Jan-Dec 2019 ? These should have been available to leaseholders on 2nd July 2020 ?

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by rabennett View Post
                    Our landlord did not issue the service charge accounts of expenditure for 1 jan to 31 dec 2018 till 2 July 2020. This was outside the 18 month limit. Does that mean the landlord cannot demand the service charge for that year?
                    All we received was a budget of anticipated costs.
                    As far as i know there is no 18 month limit rule to issue accounts. What does your lease say about producing accounts?

                    The landlord has a limited amount of time to recover costs -that is within 18 months to either issue a service charge demand or notify lessee of costs that have been incurred. Here they chose the latter - on 16th April 2020.

                    So in the 2018 accounts, were there any costs incurred prior to 15 October 2018? I'd be arguing that those costs incurred before this date would not be payable.....

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Service charge accounts should be issued within 6 months of the year end, So the December 2018 accounts should be issued no later than 30 June 2019. The 18 month rule relating to charges is applicable only if an actual charge has been made relating to costs which were incurred more than 18 months previously of which you were unaware. It is not always easy to identify the actual expenditure relating to the charge.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Section20z View Post
                        The landlord can demand and charge whatever he likes just as the lessee has the right to contest the charge and ultimately take it to FTT.
                        Good luck with that.
                        If you have some legitimate query on the charges then please let us know, if you just want to avoid paying on a technicality then you probably won't get much sympathy on a Landlord forum.
                        What a load of rubbish, many, in fact maybe the majority of us are Leaseholders (Landlord Zone is just a name), the 'technicalities' you mention are the law, S20B was enacted for a very good reason, if a Landlord is sloppy enough not to comply thats his fault...all he has to do to comply is inform a LH of upcoming expenditure, it can be rough calculations sent on back of a fag packet.
                        Advice given is based on my experience representing myself as a leaseholder both in the County Court and at Leasehold Valuation Tribunals.

                        I do not accept any liability to you in relation to the advice given.

                        It is always recommended you seek further advice from a solicitor or legal expert.

                        Always read your lease first, it is the legally binding contract between leaseholder and freeholder.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by Callan1 View Post

                          As far as i know there is no 18 month limit rule to issue accounts. What does your lease say about producing accounts?

                          The landlord has a limited amount of time to recover costs -that is within 18 months to either issue a service charge demand or notify lessee of costs that have been incurred. Here they chose the latter - on 16th April 2020.

                          So in the 2018 accounts, were there any costs incurred prior to 15 October 2018? I'd be arguing that those costs incurred before this date would not be payable.....
                          Yes..S20B relates to an 18 month limit...."If any of the relevant costs taken into account in determining the amount of any service charge were incurred more than 18 months before a demand for payment of the service charge is served on the tenant, then (subject to subsection (2) ), the tenant shall not be liable to pay so much of the service charge as reflects the costs so incurred."
                          Advice given is based on my experience representing myself as a leaseholder both in the County Court and at Leasehold Valuation Tribunals.

                          I do not accept any liability to you in relation to the advice given.

                          It is always recommended you seek further advice from a solicitor or legal expert.

                          Always read your lease first, it is the legally binding contract between leaseholder and freeholder.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by rabennett View Post
                            Had the freeholder acted in a correct way in previous years we would not even be thinking of this.
                            Im on this site as I am a landlord as well.
                            Why should we need good luck at a tribunal?
                            I'd ignore some of the posts here, less than helpful, yes FTT results can be unpredictable but a good clear case can win, if you feel S20B has not been complied with..this can be a clear black n white issue..as opposed to 'reasonableness' claims which are more unpredictable.
                            Advice given is based on my experience representing myself as a leaseholder both in the County Court and at Leasehold Valuation Tribunals.

                            I do not accept any liability to you in relation to the advice given.

                            It is always recommended you seek further advice from a solicitor or legal expert.

                            Always read your lease first, it is the legally binding contract between leaseholder and freeholder.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              In my experience it is very seldom a clear black and white issue, in this case, the lease allows estimated charges to be raised on account therefore demands were probably raised before the expenditure was incurred. In this case a s20b was issued on 16 April 2020, but we have not been told if or when an additional charge was actually made and whether or not the leaseholders could identify specific expenditure included within that charge. I have raised this point at Tribunals in the past and I have never known a Tribunal disallow the expenditure on s20b alone,

                              Comment

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