Last week, the NHF published its final version of its new Code of Governance and made some important changes from the previous draft that will impact on those housing associations looking to adopt it.
Warrant applications – beware!
There have been some recent challenges to warrants of possession, on the basis that the “Balance due at date of request” section was not filled in or stated to be £0.00. The court service ultimately accepted that warrants issued on this basis would be invalid/a nullity. This is because CPR 83.26(7) provides that where a warrant of possession is issued in respect of an SPO providing for payments by instalments, the N325 must specify the remaining amount due.
So any N325 where there is a rent arrears element must state the arrears remaining due. PCOL has already been updated so that this figure is required, but watch out where issuing a hard-copy warrant application, or in those cases that contain both anti-social behaviour/other breach of tenancy plus rent arrears elements.
Warrant requests are being returned from the court, but if court staff don’t spot the outsanding amount is missing and then a warrant is issued without certifying the amount due, then there would be a strong argument open to the tenant that the resulting warrant (and so perhaps resulting contested and expensive proceedings over breach of SPO) should be struck out.
Court fee increases
Two court fee changes slipped through on 22nd July 2016 as follows:
- Warrant of possession now £121 (up from £110)
- Injunction application issue fee now £308 (up from £280)
For more information
For more information or advice on these matters please contact Helen Tucker.
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