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Landlord Legal Issues April 2018

Landlord & tenant lawyer, Tessa Shepperson of www.landlordlaw.co.uk answers your questions

Q. We served a section 21 notice on our tenant two months ago. My son visited the property the day after she was supposed to go and found her still there. He asked her what she was doing there and told her to leave – they had a bit of an argument as a result of which she called the police. However, the policeman agreed with my son and told her she had to leave – in fact he helped her move her things out.

The tenant has now instructed solicitors and is threatening to sue us for unlawful eviction unless we let her back in and pay compensation. Surely, she cannot do this – after all we were supported by the Police!

A. I am afraid you are very much in the wrong and the policeman was too (most police are ignorant about housing law as it does not form part of their training). I suspect your tenant’s solicitor will also be writing to the police asking for compensation. A similar situation arose in the case of Naughton v. Whittle and the Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police in 2009 where the police paid the tenant compensation of £2,500.

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