Suspending a warrant of possession

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    Suspending a warrant of possession

    I received a warrant for possession. The tenant applied to suspend it. The judge told her that it was a mandatory ground (8) and the warrant would stand. At that time she owed £3400 in rent.

    I said if she paid £1500 that day I would consider not going through with the eviction. She gave me a cheque and cash to £1400 and said she would put the extra £100 cash in my account on the following Monday. Needless to say, she didn’t. I gave her until Thursday and there was no money so I telephoned her and as she had defaulted on our agreement within a week she was still to leave.

    She has now made another application to suspend on the basis that we made an agreement for her to pay £1500 that day. (I later found out that she had put £100 in my account on Thursday). The court have listed it on the same day as the eviction!

    Where do I stand legally? She is asking for more time to pay and says I have not fulfilled my part of the agreement although it was her who didn’t! I no longer want to enter into any more agreements with her and just want her out even though she still owes £2100. Can anyone advise me?

    #2
    Hope you have someting in writing or witness to your conversation.
    Why did yo make such an offer if you had s8 poss which hopefully included order for unpaid rent?

    Comment


      #3
      I was worried about her leaving the property and not paying any of the arrears? do you think they will suspend the warrant of possession?

      Comment


        #4
        Firstly, you need to attend the hearing because if you dont, then the likely outcome is the court will suspend.
        The court has given you a mandatory possession order - what this is likely to circle around is you offering to cancel the eviction if she paid £1500 - she then paid just £100 short of that but later made that sum up. The court does have a wide discretion and I personally think the warrant will be suspended because the courts generally try not to evict if possible. You might get a judge that is stickler for the rules and say eviction will go ahead but I think from what you have said you are more likely to find the judge siding with the tenant being given another chance to avoid being kicked out - you will of course be able to add your court and warrant costs onto the debt and possibly hearing attendance costs if you ask for them. The difference between her first application to suspend and the second is that in the first she had not any money on the table - now she does she is in a more favourable position and so slightly are you - you can hold a sword over her head and possibly get all your money.
        Please post back, let us know how it goes.

        Comment


          #5
          Just to clarify, what has the OP done 'wrong'.
          Should the OP have refused the money?
          Or should she not even have said she would consider not going through with the eviction?

          In similar circumstances in the past, I have said that I wouldn't enter into negotiations unless a significant sum was paid off the arrears. Was I leaving myself open in doing this?
          Is it best to just totally ignore the tenant?

          Comment


            #6
            Thanks everyone for your responses. Davidjohnbutton on th last application the judge said that he had no discretion. You now say that the courts have a wide discretion. Is this because of the agreement which we entered into? Or is it because she has now paid some of the arrears? The original possession order was made in November last year for £2800 and I've given her so many chances through the year. Last week it was £3400 but her failing to pay the £100 really was the last straw for me.

            Comment


              #7
              Obviously, you will claim there was no 'agreement to suspend the claim' just an 'agreement to consider'. I am not sure if that will make a difference - but it should.

              Does T currently owe more than 2 months rent?

              Comment


                #8
                Yes she does. She still owes 2 1/2 months rent.

                Comment


                  #9
                  The judge will "look to you" to agree to suspend the warrant and if you dont agree is likely to weigh up the fact that the tenant has paid approx one third of what you agreed would stop the eviction, albeit £100 was late.
                  Legally, the judge should not over-ride the mandatory S8 PO but they do have a power of discretion they can use. In my opinion, the OP needs to contact tenant and come up with a plan to discharge the owing amount and then both put that through to the court as agreed to suspend the warrant on terms of £x per month or whatever in addition to the ongoing rent. That will be nodded through - what you dont want is the judge making the decision for you - he/she is likely to think that well if I suspend the WOP using discretionary powers, the claimant will still get possession if she fails to keep to the arrangement.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Ok. I also have realised how cheap the rent is. If we do agree to suspend on certain terms, am I able to serve her with a section 13 notice of rent increase or can I not do that whilst she is on a suspended order?

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by jeanine008 View Post
                      Ok. I also have realised how cheap the rent is. If we do agree to suspend on certain terms, am I able to serve her with a section 13 notice of rent increase or can I not do that whilst she is on a suspended order?
                      I believe you can - but I don't believe now is the time to do so. If you hit tenant with a rent increase right now, she is likely to say "forget you" and any chance of a win-win is likely to evaporate.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Well you were right! They suspended the warrant of possession....Grr! My own fault really. Where do I go from here? The court have suspended on the terms that she paid £1500 (the rent and some of the arrears) by 28th November, £1230 (the rent and some of the arrears) by 28th December and then the rent of £770 per month in full thereafter. Can I now serve her with a notice to increase the rent or do I have to make an application to change the terms of the suspension?

                        Comment


                          #13
                          You can now serve a S13 notice to increase the rent which would take effect one month from service. Your S13 does not have to be ratified by the court - when the S13 takes effect it will alter the base rent figure to which she must add the arrears payment each month as ordered by the court.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by davidjohnbutton View Post
                            You can now serve a S13 notice to increase the rent which would take effect one month from service. Your S13 does not have to be ratified by the court - when the S13 takes effect it will alter the base rent figure to which she must add the arrears payment each month as ordered by the court.

                            Ok. That's great. I'll do that thank you. What can she do if she disagrees with the rent (which she will) and is there a minimum amount by which I can increase it? It's not gone up since 2008!

                            Comment


                              #15
                              T can refer the new rent to the local Rent Assessment panel within 28 days of receipt.

                              Comment

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