Pre Covid evictions

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    Pre Covid evictions

    My tenant stopped paying rent in August of 2019, and in November a notice was served. Beginning of February a possession order was granted and a judgement for money. Then the lockdown, and you can imagine the rest of the story. Now 13 months of unpaid rent. Am going out of my mind here, and nervous to think of an announcement tomorrow to extend the ban for yet more time. I’ve been trying hard to find info on this but most of it details with evictions served from late March onwards and the Coronavirus Act and so called “Covid evictions” surely should be about evictions during that period. The tenant is totally uncooperative and most recently was “rude and smug” to my Agent, so he’s clearly sensing just how powerful he is.
    Common sense would dictate that this case would be one of the prioritised ones, if things do start moving on Monday, but I wouldn’t bet on anything any more.
    Any thoughts on what is likely to happen? I’m asking for a High Court transfer, for what its worth.
    Thoughts, sympathy, anything welcome right now in this catastophe of a situation. Does anyone with legal understanding care to suggest an interpretation of what might happen with this case? The solicitor I have seems to have a great allergy to writing emails, or perhaps she’s also fed up with it all...

    Cant add much other than to say sorry to hear this and hope you follow through with CCJ's etc, the tenant might not be so smug later down the line when he cannot pass a credit check and no landlord will take him

    All the best


      If you are asking enforcement of the eviction via HCEOs rather than county court bailiffs then you no longer need the approval of the county court. You still need to ask for a transfer though but there does not need to be a transfer granted. Have you already spoken to HCEOs? If not then I would do that 9:01am tomorrow!


        I understand you have a possession order already ? There are a lot of us waiting for tomorrow including myself so I know how you feel. I keep my fingers crossed. Make sure you issue a ccj for all the money he owes you. This situation cannot last forever.


          I think you might need a reactivation notice, but your solicitor should know.
          And solicitor should know about transfer to high court.



            Thank you for your reply on that. That's interesting indeed to know. Are you absolutely sure that's the case? With a county court possession order in hand, it's now a matter of transferring it to high court and then calling up a private bailiff? Did this rule change recently? When you say 'you no longer need', I'm just wondering – don't want to start the day off with too much misplaced optimism.


              Just call HCEO. They will will explain everything. Easy.



                Yes it changed recently, I actually put up recently a link to a website from a well known HCEO firm with a lion as their logo where they explain all this. They sent this to me in their newsletter and I was intrigued to find out more but 'unfortunately' I don't have any evictions to undertake


                  Thank you.. have a phone call with solicitor on Monday so I will get her opinion. No doubt every other landlord in this situation has had the same idea.


                    I'd be interested to hear what comes out of it. Good luck!


                      I will leave an update on Monday for interested readers..


                        Make sure she is aware of the change in HCEO procedure


                          Big updates from today, lots has happened.

                          1. HCEO officer from London calls (somewhat out of the blue after an enquiry was sent in last week). According to her, the possession order needs to go for High Court approval - this was in the latest guidance that they have just received. Also, a 14 day hand delivered notice to the tenant is now required in order to be valid. She makes it sound like the enforcement officers are just sit waiting for new business to come through the door so they can get back to work and things can happen very quickly - ONCE the High Court has given the say so.
                          2. Solicitor speaks on the phone. She seems to be speaking mainly about money judgements, and CCJs. Reading between the lines, she seems in no rush to get vacant possession of the property, which is now my main concern. She says an eviction notice from the high court can be suspended by the tenant quite easily, for a few weeks. Is unclear of what happens after that. I could not avoid the sense that there was no priority, or fire behind her, on this. She suggests I call the county court to get the copy of the possession order.

                          Here's the cliffhanger though:

                          3. I call the court, and have the reference number to hand. Upon reading out and verifying the names, it seems that the possession order is now INVALID because names do match up correctly on the different parts of it - they've confused my name with a different name on certain pages, and they are surprised that no-one in the legal firm has picked up on this (which was done seven months ago).

                          4. I speak to the solicitor again, who is suddenly full of energy and movement upon hearing a mistake has been made. She assures me that this is the court's mistake as she gave them the right name. She makes no comment on why this wasn't picked up on before. She concludes by saying she will get the court to fix it.

                          As she is a qualified lawyer, I will make no comment about who's fault this might be, and will take her at her word that the papers will be amended as it is the court's mistake.

                          If cannot be amended, then this case can barely be salvaged at this point and the property is properly only good for repossession by the bank. Who would have the heart for another 18 months of this??

                          Your thoughts are welcome, everyone.

                          PS. It makes sense that a solicitor would not have fire behind them: they probably make no small amount of fees by sending letters for payment back and forward, and without any urgency to bring matters to a head. Let's assume for now the court is at fault and it will be fixed soon, I've certainly learned there really is no-one to help the lonely landlord out in times like this, and I feel I need a new, assertive strategy is needed here.


                            Do not despair. It will be sorted.

                            Maybe barrister will be better than a solicitor. Some of them are very good from my experience.


                              Thank you, Perce, for the optimism. I'm sure this paperwork issue can be sorted by the current solicitor. I will take your kind optimism and it will sustain me to get through a few more days of this

                              I had actually thought, Landlord Action, who seem to have their own legal department. I'm looking for someone with fire behind them. A barrister, now that would cost plenty.


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                                30-10-2020, 10:32 AM
                              • Pre Covid evictions
                                by nreid
                                My tenant stopped paying rent in August of 2019, and in November a notice was served. Beginning of February a possession order was granted and a judgement for money. Then the lockdown, and you can imagine the rest of the story. Now 13 months of unpaid rent. Am going out of my mind here, and nervous...
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                              • Reply to Pre Covid evictions
                                by jpkeates
                                That has always been the case for orders made during possession hearings.
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                                30-10-2020, 09:30 AM
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                              • Reply to Pre Covid evictions
                                by nreid
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