What’s new

The pages on Shelter Legal are updated regularly to reflect changes in the law. This page lists the most recent updates to Shelter Legal.

Covid-19: Reactivation of possession proceedings

Changes made 17 September 2020

This new page has been added to the suite of pages on COVID-19 and housing. It explains how claimants and/or defendants can apply from 21 September 2020 to reactivate proceedings that have been stayed under the rules in place until 20 September 2020. Practice Direction 55C sets out the new court process which applies during the 'interim period' which runs from 21 September 2020 to 28 March 2021.

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Money judgments in possession proceedings for rented property

Changes made 14 September 2020

This new page provides information about money judgments made as part of proceedings to recover possession of rented property. It covers suspended and outright orders and adjourned proceedings. There is a section on enforcement of money judgments in the County Court and the High Court including practical information about suspending warrants and writs of control. Find out which judgments attract statutory interest, how to mark a judgment as satisfied and what the impact is on credit reference files.

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Property guardians

Changes made 10 September 2020

On 29 August 2020, the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government updated its non-statutory guidance for current and potential property guardians. A link to the guidance can be found under ‘Essential links’ on this page.

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Periodic tenancies Section 13 rent increases

Changes made 09 September 2020

This page has been amended to clarify that the form prescribed in regulation 3(f) and Schedule 1 to the Assured Tenancies and Agricultural Occupancies (Forms) (England) Regulations 2015 SI 2015/620 for referring a notice of rent increase served under section 13(2) of the Housing Act 1988 to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber), is the Form 6 (Application referring a Notice proposing a new rent under an Assured Periodic Tenancy or Agricultural Occupancy to a Tribunal). There is also an alternative ‘Form Rents 1: Application referring a notice proposing a new rent under an Assured Periodic Tenancy or Agricultural Occupancy, to the Tribunal’ available on gov.uk.

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Covid-19: Protection for tenants

Changes made 02 September 2020

This and related pages on Shelter Legal have been updated to reflect the following changes: Extension of stay to possession proceedings under CPR Part 55: On 21 August 2020, the government announced that the stay to possession proceedings under CPR Part 55 would continue until 20 September 2020. On 22 August 2020, rule 55.29 of the Civil Procedure Rules 1998 was amended by rule 2 of the Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 5) (Coronavirus) Rules 2020 SI 2020/889 to provide for possession proceedings that started on or before 19 September 2020 to be stayed until 20 September. The scope of the stay includes enforcement of possession orders. New six-month minimum notice period: On 29 August 2020, The Coronavirus Act 2020 (Residential Tenancies: Protection from Eviction) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2020 SI 2020/914 amended Schedule 29 to the Coronavirus Act 2020 to extend the minimum notice period to six months and introduce a number of exceptions. The new rules will apply until 31 March 2021. From 2 September 2020, The Assured Tenancies and Agricultural Occupancies (Forms) (England) (Amendment) and Suspension (Coronavirus) Regulations 2020 SI 2020/924 suspend paragraph 12(2) in Schedule 29 to the Coronavirus Act 2020 and insert an updated form 6A into the Assured Tenancies and Agricultural Occupancies (Forms) (England) Regulations 2015 SI 2015/620. The new form 6A reflects the six-month minimum notice period and the ten-month time limit for taking possession action, introduced on 29 August 2020 by The Coronavirus Act 2020 (Residential Tenancies: Protection from Eviction) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2020 SI 2020/914. From 2 September 2020, a section 21 notice must be served on the updated form 6A.

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Local authority interim duty to accommodate

Changes made 28 August 2020

In R (on the application of Tiemo) v Lambeth LBC [2020] EWHC 1193 (Admin), the High Court agreed with the local authority that interim accommodation could be suitable where a lack of national insurance number meant the applicant had not applied for housing benefit yet, but once claimed, it would cover the applicant’s housing costs, including any arrears accrued, and the local authority had given an undertaking not to take action for non-payment of rent while the claim was pending.

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Enforcement of possession orders by county court possession warrants

Changes made 25 August 2020

Rule 16(1) of the Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 3) Rules 2020 SI 2020/747 inserts rule 83.8A into the Civil Procedure Rules 1998 to introduce a requirement for a notice of eviction to be delivered to the premises before a writ or a warrant of eviction is executed. The requirement applies to High Court and County Court enforcement. The amendment was originally to come into force on 23 August 2020, however on 22 August 2020 rule 3 of the Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 5) (Coronavirus) Rules 2020 SI 2020/889 amended the SI 2020/747 to provide for this requirement to apply from 20 September 2020 and to specify that no notice of eviction could be served until 21 September 2020. As of 20 September 2020, SI 2020/747 also amends provisions for transferring cases from the County Court to the High Court in CPR Part 30.

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Enforcement of possession orders by writs of possession in the High Court

Changes made 25 August 2020

Rule 16(1) of the Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 3) Rules 2020 SI 2020/747 inserts rule 83.8A into the Civil Procedure Rules 1998 to introduce a requirement for a notice of eviction to be delivered to the premises before a writ or a warrant of eviction is executed. The requirement applies to High Court and County Court enforcement. The amendment was originally to come into force on 23 August 2020, however on 22 August 2020 rule 3 of the Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 5) (Coronavirus) Rules 2020 SI 2020/889 amended the SI 2020/747 to provide for this requirement to apply from 20 September 2020 and to specify that no notice of eviction could be served until 21 September 2020.

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Persons eligible for assistance: non EEA/EU

Changes made 21 August 2020

From 24 August 2020, the Allocation of Housing and Homelessness (Eligibility) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 SI 2020/667 amend the Allocation of Housing and Homelessness (Eligibility) (England) Regulations 2006 SI 2006/1294. The 2020 Regulations add two further classes of persons subject to immigration control who are eligible for an allocation of housing and for homelessness assistance under the Housing Act 1996.

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How liability for rent affects housing benefit claims

Changes made 17 August 2020

In AB v London Borough of Camden (HB) [2020] UKUT 158 (AAC), the Upper Tribunal held that the fee for a continuous cruiser licence for a houseboat was eligible for housing benefit. The judgment restores the housing benefit eligibility of such payments.

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