permission to sublet

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    permission to sublet

    First time posting from me although i have browsed here frequently. I have two leasehold flats in a building and did not have any problems for six years until the freehold was sold to another company at which point maintenance charges have risen and sharp practice appears to be norm. My enquiry today concerns the permission to sublet. When we purchased the properties my solicitor obtained this permission from the previous freeholders solicitor and we paid for this. The letter from the solicitor states :-
    The form of tenancy agreement is approved. Our approval will not be required on subsequent occasions provided that the same form is used and provided that in the interim there has been no change in the law affecting this form of agreement
    They also acknowledged the cheque for £117.5
    After 30 months of problems the new freeholder has just claimed that we are in breach of the lease by not getting their permission to sublet. They are asking us for copies of our permission although they must have been given these when they purchased the freehold. They were also fully aware from day one that we rent these properties. I have several others problems that i will put on other threads but where do i stand on this.
    Thanking you in advance for any help.

    #2
    I think it is binding on them, subject to a review of the lease and its wording.

    One option is to say its binding, take it up with former landlord and he was obligated to declare it, not me, and by all means take it to the LVT for determination if you wish.

    In the meantine here is the document and my notice fee of £25 ( less if the lease says so or nothing if it doesnt require a fee to be paid)
    Based on the information posted, I offer my thoughts.Any action you then take is your liability. While commending individual effort, there is no substitute for a thorough review of documents and facts by paid for professional advisers.

    Comment


      #3
      Yes. As T acted on the consent issued by oldL (the then L), by subletting, newL is bound by that- but this applies only to that subletting and not renewals or replacement sublettings. This is so even if oldL did not tell newL about it in the sale procedure/documentation.
      JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
      1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
      2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
      3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
      4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

      Comment


        #4
        I read Post #1 's approval letter worded by old LL solicitor as saying :

        " Approval is not required for subsequent lettings if the same form of tenancy agreement is used "

        and I take "SAME FORM" to mean the "AST tenancy agreement" .

        Comment


          #5
          I think it is binding due to its wording and I dont think prejudicial to the new LL as it limits the form of agreement.

          If the lease has broader requirements such as one family then they may still have some authority over consent.
          Based on the information posted, I offer my thoughts.Any action you then take is your liability. While commending individual effort, there is no substitute for a thorough review of documents and facts by paid for professional advisers.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
            but this applies only to that subletting and not renewals or replacement sublettings. This is so even if oldL did not tell newL about it in the sale procedure/documentation.
            Why? The consent appears to be universal, and not restricted to a particular tenant.

            The only proviso is that:

            a. the same "form" of letting agreement is used (such term would imply that the FH was aware that there may be different Ts over the years); and

            b. no change in the law affecting the type of tenancy intended to be created by that form of agreement.

            Comment


              #7
              Because I read post #1's reference to form of Agreement as meaning one that features a specific T's name. Of course you'd be right if it doesn't.
              JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
              1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
              2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
              3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
              4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
                Because I read post #1's reference to form of Agreement as meaning one that features a specific T's name. Of course you'd be right if it doesn't.
                A "form of" an agreement generally means just that, not any specific agreement between any 2 parties in particular.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Well should the new LL dispute this then the other documents from the, LH I assume asking for approval of the TA, not merely the TA for that letting( and any renewals), would put it in context.

                  I think the old LL's intent is clear, and the alternative unlikely.

                  (A bit like EMI arguing with Pink Floyd that a record does not mean a CD or an mp3 file!)
                  Based on the information posted, I offer my thoughts.Any action you then take is your liability. While commending individual effort, there is no substitute for a thorough review of documents and facts by paid for professional advisers.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Thank you for all the advice. I had the permission letter for one of the flats in my records and the other is referred to in my solicitors letters during the purchase. I sent a copy of the letter in my possession and said that if they require copies of the other one then they would need to approach my solicitor who may raise a charge. I received the following E-mail
                    Thank you for providing the letter from the previous leaseholder. (i assume they meant Freeholder) You are required by law to apply for permission from us as previously advised. It is not our job to make enquiry from your solicitors if you have permission or not.

                    I feel this is probably just a way of putting more pressure on me as i am about to apply to LVT for a ruling on service charges.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I would reply and say that

                      your inability to distinguish between a freeholder and leaseholder is clear reflection of your level of understanding of the issues. I have consent, with which I have complied, and have provided you with a copy of the document, for your infomation.

                      Should you consider me to in breach, it is for you, not I, to prove that and I will be happy to present the information to the LVT, to whom you need to apply in order to establish if there is breach.

                      If you do not know who the LVT are I will provide you with their detials (and that of LandLordZone) where you might expand your understanding.


                      There is always the chance that they are right however make it their task, which it is, to resolve it.
                      Based on the information posted, I offer my thoughts.Any action you then take is your liability. While commending individual effort, there is no substitute for a thorough review of documents and facts by paid for professional advisers.

                      Comment

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