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m&m
16-10-2009, 09:20 AM
This was touched on in a previous thread, but what was said there conflicts with what I thought was true. The way I understood it was this:

You send in a rent statement with your n5 and n119 forms, you then send another statement to both the court and the defendant 5 days before the hearing date and you take that statement with you on the day. Is that right? If so then is what davidjohnbutton wrote in the other thread incorrect:

1. At the time of issue of the S8notice
2. At the time of issue of the Summons for Possession (i.e. when you file at pcol) and
3. At the date of the hearing.

Obviously getting this right is crucial. I've never had a problem doing it 'my' way but if it's wrong then I'd certainly like to know!

As a related aside: One thing I was never quite sure of was whether you had to SEND the updated statement to the court and the defendant 5 days before the hearing, or whether it had to be WITH them by then. Does anyone know?

davidjohnbutton
16-10-2009, 10:50 AM
I know of no LEGAL requirement to send a rent statement 5 days before the court hearing. It is sometimes the case that a possession claim can be settled at the court door by the defendant making payment at that point, or even by placing money in front of the judge.

What the judge wants to see is evidence that the rent was 8 weeks/2 months in arrear or more at three points:-

1. When you issue the S8 Notice
2. When you issue the PCOL claim (or paper claim) and
3. Just before he/she pronounces the possession order.

Sometimes a defendant will deny the arrears - the judge is likely to ask then what they think the rent arrears are. If the defendant answers a figure which is 2 months or more's worth, then that is all that is required to side with the landlords claim. A major dispute over figures is likely to lead to an adjournment for each side to produce proofs of payments/receipts.

A proper accounting sheet like a print off of Quicken or Money or Sage software is likely to go down well as it shows accuracy on the part of the landlord who is accounting to the exact penny.

This was quite useful in a client case I did recently where the arrears were £2100 on a monthly rent of £350 - the defendant appeared and disputed - he made the mistake of accepting that the arrears were more than £700 though - result was possession order and my accounting sheet accepted as correct.

zunaid112
16-10-2009, 11:24 AM
Hi david, can you contact me regarding our issue. thanks

m&m
16-10-2009, 12:27 PM
Hi David,

Luckily I was able to find the link to where I learnt the '5 day' thing:

http://www.rla.org.uk/landlord/documents/rent_arrears/complete_courtPapers.shtml

What do you think?

davidjohnbutton
16-10-2009, 13:55 PM
Well I would like to see the source for their assetion that it is a legal requirement - I have never done it - I simply take 4 or 5 copies of the rent schedule into court for the possession hearing (1 for me, 1 for judge and 1 for each defendant plus a spare one for their solicitor or rep. I have never had this requirement brough to my attention or seen it in any of the guidance papers or claims protocols.

m&m
16-10-2009, 15:31 PM
Fair enough. If you've never been pulled up on it then it can't be too much of a problem :-)

davidjohnbutton
16-10-2009, 15:48 PM
Since you got my curiosity going - I did a few searches - and came up with http://www.justice.gov.uk/civil/procrules_fin/pdf/practice_directions/pd_part55b.pdf - now that does in a few places mention 5 clear days - but it relates to applications being made 5 clear days before the hearing.

Nowhere does it say that you have to give the tenant a rent schedule or breakdown of arrears before the hearing BUT it would be prudent to have let the tenant know at some stage that they are x amount in arrears both before issue of the possession claim and at some stage between issue and hearing and then again at the actual hearing when the final figure is known and all payments if any taken into account.

havensRus
16-10-2009, 20:50 PM
The notice I get from the courts confirming the date for a possession hearing always states that if we intend to rely on any witness statement, to ensure it is sent to the court and received at least 2 clear working days before the hearing. So I send in a witness statement/pack which includes the rent statement.