Sarah Salmon and Christopher McCarthy to appear in Court of Appeal case about landlord licensing in Wales and validity of s8 Housing Act notice

February 19, 2020

Sarah Salmon and Christopher McCarthy are instructed by Hugh James solicitors to act for the respondent tenants in Jarvis v Evans. The case raises a narrow but important point about the provisions of the Housing (Wales) Act 2014. Can a landlord who is not registered under Part 1 of the Act serve a notice seeking possession under section 8 Housing Act 1988?

The case is due to be heard by the Court of Appeal in June 2020.

Background to the case

In short, unless licensed under Part 1 of the Housing (Wales) Act 2014, the landlord of a dwelling subject to a domestic tenancy must not, amongst other things, serve a notice to terminate a tenancy: section 7, Housing (Wales) Act 2014. At the time of serving the section 8 notice in this case, the landlord was neither licensed nor registered. A district judge made a possession order (the point not being taken at first instance).

Her Honour Judge Garland-Thomas, on the first appeal, held that a section 8 notice fell within the provisions of section 7 of the Act and, as such, an unregistered landlord was prohibited from serving such a notice. The possession order was set aside.