Potential Joint-Tenancy Problem - Any Tips?

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    Potential Joint-Tenancy Problem - Any Tips?

    Hi,
    I have 3 tenants under a single joint-tenancy 6 month AST agreement at one of my properties. I am about to serve a section 21 notice and have realised that the letting agent did not serve all 3 tenants with the 'How to Rent' (only tenant A & tenant B served), EPC (only tenant C served), Prescribed Info relating to deposit (only tenant A & tenant C served).and Gas Safety Certificate (only tenant B served).

    My question is: - do l have a problem. Do l have to make sure all 3 tenants are individually served with all statutory information (How to Rent, EPC, PI, GSC) before l can validly serve the section 21?

    Any tips?

    Thanks!

    #2
    Basically YES. Do it now. 3 or more unrelated tenants = an HMO (house of multiple occupation for which you may need consents or a licence - did you know this?



    Freedom at the point of zero............

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      #3
      I would get all parts of the joint tenant to sign for receipt -- however there is only one tenant. It is probably sufficient to get acknowledgement of service of documents from only one. For example see Shelter on serving notice to joint tenants or Hammersmith and Fulham LBC v Monk [1991] UKHL 6; Doe d. Aslin v Summersett (1830) 1 B & Ad 135.

      However you do have to identify the tenant correctly (with all names).

      As far as I know you probably don't and I don't think this has been well tested in court - I'd be inclined not to draw attention to a potential non-issue by serving the other tenants now.

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        #4
        Interlaken - sorry should have said the joint-tenants are husband/wife/son (24 y/o) - but your point as far as l can understand is that l should ensure all tenants are served?

        AndrewDod - l checked out the Shelter info & the case law but they all seemed to relate to a tenant serving notice and not the service of the How to Rent, EPC, PI, GSC unless l missed your point...

        The letting agent's went into administration and are not returning my calls/emails leaving me with this mess to sort out! I know l have a long wait to repossess but want to be sure....

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          #5
          I agree with AndrewDod. I wouldn't draw attention to the fact that it's a mess. Issue the Section 21 and see if they contest it. They may leave without any problem.

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            #6
            Originally posted by LeeMac View Post
            l checked out the Shelter info & the case law but they all seemed to relate to a tenant serving notice and not the service of the How to Rent, EPC, PI, GSC unless l missed your point...
            It is a general issue of service to the tenant (it matters not much what is served). Whatever is served it seems reasonable to regard it as served if given to "the tenant" (and there is only ONE tenant - which is the conglomerate) - notices do not have to be signed as received anyway, but if one tenant signed on behalf of everyone around the table or not around the table you would maintain it is served. But you do need to name the tenant properly (as that conglomerate). But there is not good case law on the matter.

            See for example the section on landlord's notice here https://england.shelter.org.uk/legal...oint_tenancies

            Tenants don't have to sign the PI at all - they just have to be given the opportunity to sign.

            The tenant by contrast has to act jointly (during the fixed period) - but signing to say a document was seen is not acting.

            In short if you serve notice to a joint tenant you write to all of the tenants (named jointly) but that does not mean you write 6 separate letters (exactly the opposite in fact) - six letters named to 6 individuals would not be proper service at all.....

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