Pre Covid evictions

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    #16
    I would start a money claim online MCOL for the outstanding amount so the T gets a ccj asap. This will then show on their credit report and will alert any landlord that does a proper tenant reference.

    If you do the money claim at the same time as possession I believe this does not show on the tenant's credit report.

    I'm so sorry to hear you're in this predicament. But as Perce says - it will be sorted.

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      #17
      Thank you Berlingogirl: I am informed a CCJ is already active and entered on the books.
      I'm thinking of a company called Night Fox Investigations to chase the money (watch the video on their webpage, rather interesting) and will try the MCOL you mention.
      I'm not keen for the solicitor to write letters back and forward. Seems quite futile in this case.

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        #18
        Originally posted by nreid View Post
        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.
        Sounds like the HCEOs are your best choice. They will get things moving quickly.

        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.
        This to me sounds like she has little or no interest in getting this sorted for you anytime soon. Alarm bells would be ringing for me.

        So what if the High Court writ can be stopped for a few weeks? County Court enforcement will get you nowhere to begin with, so what would you be losing?

        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.
        Sounds like another reason to get rid of her (of course after she sorted out her mess, if there is a mess). Ask her to immediately send you a copy of the court's possession order, then you know whether it is correct or not. Do not take no for an answer, you're the client.

        If she has not messed up then go straight to the HCEOs for enforcement.

        If she has messed up then make it clear that any delay in getting a correct possession order and the rental losses for that period you will claim from her PI insurance.

        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.
        Do not take her word for anything. I would even ask for a complete copy of her court file right now if I were you.

        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.
        Depends what the issue is. Once you have a copy of the repossession order come back and state what exactly (if anything) is wrong with it.

        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.
        Who is paying the solicitor and on what basis?

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          #19
          An update on this:

          1. The court have confirmed it was the solicitor's mistake, and it is now with a judge to see if they will agree to change it back. Timescale for this is end of October.

          2. I am paying the solicitor. I have sent a neutral letter pointing out the deficiencies of the service provided, which are glaring. One hardly needs to have passed the bar to see what went wrong here: inaction, negligence, reluctance to communicate.

          3. I have just applied for Universal Credit payment deductions, which now run to 14 months arrears. Do you think this would hamper any case if it was paid, or somehow allow for the situation to be prolonged?

          4 Am considering a Manchester debt collector, who are very persistent, to chase the debt meanwhile.

          5. I also discovered the CCJ has not been enforced, so it is just sitting in the air somewhere. How does one enforce it and get it onto the record?

          When the possession order comes through, I will be able to say what it allows for. A letter of complaint will follow to solicitor, if this doesn't come through, and then things will get quite dirty. Hoping it is just an obstacle.

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            #20
            I would say that my stress is slightly reduced by the agent who has told me the tenant has young kids who visit him on the weekend and the second bedroom is used for this reason. On a recent visit, there was no sign of drugs/marijuana or antisocial behaviour. I hope this means there is no criminality involved.

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              #21
              Hope the judge will agree. Good luck. Keep us informed.

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                #22
                Will let you know when I hear. The solicitor seems to think it’s a small matter. Not that I have a great deal of trust.

                I also discovered she is charging a rather economical £300 plus vat plus court fee for possession. Not a lot and no wonder she doesn’t want to provide on-call legal advice.

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                  #23
                  The £355 charge is applicable no matter who makes the application - she isn't making any money on that, it costs what it costs.

                  Shame that it was the Solicitor's mistake, there is a provision in the CPR that allows the Court to make a correction to an order without a hearing, as long as it was an error/omission by the Court and doesn't materially change the order. Sounds like it will soon be sorted now though. She's right, it's not a big deal, but needs to be signed off.

                  I'd certainly be asking the solicitor to cover the costs of correcting the issue they caused, they're insured for exactly that reason.

                  Regarding CCJ, it won't be enforced automatically, you have to apply for enforcement.

                  Regarding monies owed/possession, if you transfer up to High Court (advisable, but you'll need permission from the County Court) you can apply for a Writ of Control, which is a combined possession/money writ. You could apply for a Writ of Possession and Writ of Control separately, but I mean...Why?

                  To transfer up, you just need a Judge to permit the transfer of enforcement to the High Court, then there's some faffing about with seals etc (most HCEOs will do this for you) then they'll go off and enforce them. Gone are the days of 0 notice possession/enforcement, but a HCEO will get it done fastest, and have the most powers to remove people and seize goods.

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                    #24
                    Thanks for the responses on this topic. To update, the Court have come back and duly amended the possession order, so now that hurdle is cleared.

                    I sent it to an HCEO firm and they replied to say that indeed I did not have High Court permission. It seems I have to send in a form N244 form to request the transfer.

                    Assuming I can do this, or even get a solicitor to do it, how long does it take before the case can then go to an HCEO?

                    The area where the property is located is currently in a Tier One area although I imagine this won't be for long: looks like everywhere is destined to go up the tiers and thus, in tier 2 and above, no evictions can take place.

                    Regarding the CCJ enforcement, how exactly does one 'enforce' it? I asked this solicitor why the judgment was not active and she actually said "I have no idea why the CCJ is not on the books, maybe it's because the names were wrong on the claim form". To which I could hardly believe my eyes.

                    There was also some wording on the possession order document at the time which says 'the claimant will send the defendant a bill outlining the costs' and that there would be the opportunity to have a hearing about the amount. They also listed a daily amount due from the defendant until such times as possession has been delivered over, a daily amount which almost makes up the monthly rental amount if multiplied by 31 days (but not quite).

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                      #25
                      If the money judgement was made at the same time as the possession order, the ccj isn't registered until you do something to enforce it.

                      Although it's not practical now, I'd use a different solicitor in future.
                      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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                        #26
                        Can’t HCEO arrange the transfer to High Court ?

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                          #27
                          No, I thought they would transfer the case as they made it sound so easy on the phone. I sent through the possession order and they just replied to say there was no permission.

                          And another kind poster in this thread said that it’s no longer necessary to wait and see if permission is given, it just has to be applied for - but I’m not sure if that is correct or not.

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                            #28
                            So just a question on the money claim: I do this online and pay a fee.
                            How will they connect / match up this tenant and the debt I enter with the court judgment? Do I type in exactly the amount stated on the court possession order?
                            The order actually stated a daily fee due to me from 8th March. Should I calculate that amount (higher than the amount of the court judgment) and include it or just stick with the initial amount mentioned in February?
                            thank you all for your responses. Note this is after a solicitor said she had “no idea” why the claim wasn’t registered! Unbelievable but am finding a competent one this week.

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                              #29
                              There should be a space on the form where you should mention court possession order and the reference.

                              I would add a daily fee from 8th March. I would mention in the space provided the initial fee and why you are adding a daily fee.

                              Hope somebody more experienced from the forum will advise you too.





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                                #30
                                Latest news on this is that HCEO would not accept the possession order as it did not have permission. Sending in request in next few days. The area has gone into tier 2 as of this weekend, so it would hardly matter.
                                Another wtf moment when speaking to the court: the ccj exists but is not registered as this is only registered when enforcement is applied for.

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