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Court ruling will be ‘a huge relief to private and social landlords’

The Court of Appeal’s decision to back landlords in the gas safety certificate challenge last week was an enormous relief to landlords, according to property law firm Winckworth Sherwood. 

The ruling gives landlords the ability to serve Section 21 notices to evict tenants where gas safety certificates were not provided at the outset of the tenancy agreement.

The case - Trecarrell House vs Patricia Rouncefield – reverses an earlier decision that effectively gave tenants the right to remain permanently in a home if a landlord failed to provide a gas safety certificate before the tenant took up occupation of the property.

“This decision is an important victory for landlords and demonstrates a common-sense approach by the Court of Appeal,” said Liam Hale, an associate at the property law firm Winckworth Sherwood.

Hale continued: “The courts had previously held that if a landlord failed to provide a gas safety certificate before the tenant took up occupation of the property a Section 21 notice could never be served, meaning a tenant effectively had the right to remain in a property for as long as they wished provided there was no other breaches.

“The decision now allows a landlord to issue a gas safety certificate retrospectively and then, should they wish, serve a Section 21 notice to evict a tenant. It brings the treatment of gas safety certificates in line with other certificates and will be a huge relief to private and social landlords.

“This decision may yet be appealed, but for the time being will provide great relief for landlords.” 

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