Tips On Taking Landlords To Court
SELCHA is in a unique position to advice leaseholders on taking landlords to court or to the LVT. This is because we have attended dozens of court and LVT hearings over the last five years.
Here is what we have found:
When solicitors are retained by leaseholders to represent them at LVT hearings, the solicitors often underestimate what they are going to face at this lay tribunal.
Leaseholders of any given premises only go to the LVT once and their lawyer if they retain one usually has no experience of an LVT hearing.
Multiple landlords however are always in court, which usually refers cases to the LVT. They retain the same lawyers again and again and this usually shows very quickly.
Leaseholders should make use of these specialist lawyers by checking the experience of a law firm in its work at the LVT before appointing a lawyer.
Where leaseholders have a dispute with a landlord and wish to engage in litigation with him, they should avoid large legal battles like the plague. When this happens invariably the only satisfactory outcome is for the lawyers.
In one case of which SELCHA is familiar over 500 leaseholders each paid £5,000 to fund a court case against the landlord only see the case more or less fall apart for lack of funds after four years or so.
In this case as in most cases the issue between all leaseholders and the landlord is identical. This should give leaseholders a huge advantage. Experience shows SELCHA that if all the leaseholders in the above case had funded one leaseholder to try his particular case it would probably have cost them about £10.00 each or at most £20.00 each. If the leaseholder wins his case then the landlord's position becomes untenable in relation to the grievances of the remainder of the leaseholders.