Are Mesne profits a prohibited payment under the Tenant Fees Act?

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    Are Mesne profits a prohibited payment under the Tenant Fees Act?

    I've been looking through the text of the Act and while 'rent' is not a prohibited payment, it is not defined anywhere in the Act. For obvious reasons, a landlord whose tenant is holding-over would not wish to claim that the daily occupation charge they are demanding is rent, so I'm wondering whether its a prohibited payment, or whether in the absence of a definition, a wider interpretation of the term 'rent' applies?

    #2
    Mesne profits aren't a fee (or rent).
    They're compensation for a loss of profit that should have accrued to the landlord which they were not able to generate because they weren't in possession of the land,

    It's an old notion, so, for example, it would be used if a farmer used a field that was owned by someone else while there was a dispute about ownership.
    If there was a harvest during the dispute, and the owner won the dispute, they would claim the value of the crop they weren't able to grow and profit from as mesne profits.

    The only thing legislation does is set the value of that profit for a rental property.

    So I think mesne profits are allowed in the same way that deposit deductions are allowed (and are not mentioned in the tenant fees act), they're a general contractual compensation, not a fee.

    Obviously, someone could test that in court, but I don't think anyone wants to mess about with contractual compensation, because that's a bit of a minefield.
    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

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      #3
      Thanks jpk. That does make sense.

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