eviction section 8

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    eviction section 8

    hi guys first post so I hope I get this right!

    My friend has recently fallen on bad times and has been summons to court early march for s8 grounds 8, 10,,and 11.

    she is a housing association tenant and the arrears equate to around 10 weeks rent.

    she split up with her partner and her housing benefit / income support was stopped as they had reason to believe the information was incorrect. this was not true she was living alone but buried her head in the sand as she was depressed / suicidal (child loss).

    anyway she is back with said partner and rent arrears are being paid off each week now between £200-£250per week. (including £90 weekley rent)

    at this rate at the time of the court hearing the arrears will be down to approximately 6 weeks around £550.

    she is really worried about loosing her home on grounds 10 or 11 as I believe ground 8 is 8 weeks rent or more oweing.

    she is sure the arrears will be paid off within 4-5 weeks after the hearing but is the judge likely to evict her as she will still be in arrears.


    and what is the likely timescale to leave if the judge does evict her?

    thanks for taking the time to read this and any help would be much appreciated.

    #2
    Also one thing she told me which I thought was odd.

    She said that when she went to view the property for the first time she was handed the keys there and then.

    No deposit no rent paid upfront nothing. Considering she still had over a month to pay at her previous address she was in arrears immediately!

    It may not mean anything but I thought id mention it and see if you have any opinions on this point too.

    Once again thanks for any comments.

    Comment


      #3
      She should 'phone Shelter 0808 800 4444 (maybe a lomg wait.. ) for advice - see..
      http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_ad...dvice_helpline

      Housing Associations are usually (but not allways..) fairly reasonable about these things - as long a tenant makes sensible steps to be a good tenant (ie starts paying... ) and then sticks to their plan & communicates with landlord.

      What sort of tenancy does she have ?? See...
      http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_ad...tion_tenancies
      - some are easier to be evicted from ... See what the tenancy paperwork says or if that's lost get her to ask landlord for a copy. Tell us what sort it is.

      She should ensure she meets with then writes - keep copies - her Housing association {there may be a housing officer assigned to her} & explains (calmly & politely..) what has happened & what she will do to pay off £££ owed then STICK TO WHAT SHE SAYS!! So if she is going to pay off arrears @ £110 a week (£200 less £90) then only promise, say, £75 (but pay £110) so she can have a couple of bad weeks... And make sure there are no other issues - eg no complaints from neighbours or damage or whatever..

      I'll assume that she has an "assured tenancy"

      Grounds 10 & 11 are "discretionary" grounds and judge may not/probably won't grant eviction for those: She MUST turn up in court, fill paperwork well in advance & be calm, polite & smart...

      Ground 8 (assuming rent paid weekly) is for 8 weeks being owed when Section8 issued & when it gets to court. So get ot down well below 8 weeks AT LEAST A WEEK BEFORE court date. Make sure she has paperwork proving everything paid.

      If she does all this the HA may drop the case, but she MUST TURN UP just in case..

      'phone Shelter, keep posting here on what they say & any more questions...

      Key thing she needs to understand: If evicted for rent arrears the council will find her "intentionally homeless" (yes I understand what happened..) and won't/may-not have to help her & won't have to find her anywhere else to live, not even a homeless hostel. She is in a serious position & must treat it as a priority..

      For the stopped HB get her to contact CaB who may be able to help her with a HB back-dating appeal - see...
      http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/englan...get_advice.htm
      (Put post-code in the box it tells you where the nearest citizens advice place is.


      Thanks for posting & being a friend to her.. We all have sticky patches in our lives. Hope it gets better for her.

      Cheers!
      I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

      Comment


        #4
        Thanks for the reply artful.

        This is another problem, she has not returned her defence form and the 14 days have expired! Another bury her head in the sand moment.

        Ill be back round hers tomorrow to see if I can help make head or tail of it and try to help her fill it in.

        Comment


          #5
          Put defence in anyway, plead whatever, keep copy. Call Shelter 1stbif possible.
          I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

          Comment


            #6
            Hi again,

            So I filled out the defense form with her today it will be posted first thing tomorrow.

            Unfortunately she has no landline and to call shelter from a mobile would prove costly. So she will be using a relatives phone over the weekend.

            A few things in the court papers I noticed and have done a little research online.

            I've read that housing associations (following proper protocol) are supposed to offer help in applying for housing benefit. Is this true as my friend has never had such an offer of help to her.

            Also the housing association claims 3 home visits were made to discuss payment plans. The visits did indeed happen but there was no mention of payment arrangements. Could this help in her defence?

            1 last thing, does anyone have an opinion on post #2, of landlord handing over keys at what was believed to be the first viewing. This means the landlord has made tenant go into arrears from the word go! This just doesnt seem right to me.

            She will be sticking to the repayment plan as stated above and the arrears at time of court date will be £540 (slightly less than 6 weeks rent so below the 8 week threshold).
            Thanks again for any advice!

            Comment


              #7
              Does the tenancy agreement say that rent is payable in advance?

              Comment


                #8
                Yes mrs mug the rent is due in advance each monday.

                Comment


                  #9
                  The Shelter number is free from a mobile too :-)

                  Comment


                    #10
                    hi there. My friend has now had a letter from housing association called a conversion notice.

                    She now has an assured non-shorthold tenancy. Does this give her greater security ??

                    The letter also says to ensure the payments of 200 pounds continue until the court hearing.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Interesting. What sort of tenancy did she have before - eg introductory?

                      If there has been a change of type it could perhaps be argued there's a new tenancy & thus new notices & court date may be needed.

                      Phone Shelter PLEASE!

                      Assured tenancy has same grounds as before - but phone Shelter!
                      I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Yes it was a 'starter tenancy'

                        She still hasn't phoned shelter.

                        What do think would happen if she got a loan and paid off the arrears before the hearing?

                        Would she still have to pay the court costs?

                        Comment


                          #13
                          An update.

                          My friend today has been contacted by the housing association.

                          The court hearing is on thursday and the arrears are £435. This is less than 5 weeks rent so well below the 8 week threshold.

                          The housing association has said they will be asking for a suspended possession and that she will have a ccj against her.

                          Could anyone tell me how the suspended possession works and how long it will hang over her?

                          Also will the ccj stay on her credit file even if the arrears are paid off within a month or so?

                          Thanks again for your help.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            CCJ's are only registered when enforcement action is taken, or the court approves a payment plan. If she pays before either of those occurs it won't be registered.

                            Suspended possession order means court makes order for possession, but suspends it as long as the defendant adheres to certain conditions - most likely paying off arrears in instalments and other rent on time. If tenant falls into delinquency with those conditions the order is unsuspended.

                            How long it 'hangs over her' will depend on the conditions.
                            I'm not a lawyer, what I say is the truth as I understand it. I offer no guarantee except good intentions.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Make sure she goes to the hearing!
                              Allow tenants to protect their own deposits. I want free money when they do it wrong

                              Comment

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