Genuine Liability – sham agreement

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    We have refused a claim (following a change of address) in accordance with Regulation 9(1)(a). I am also going to add 9(1)(l) in the alternative. However, I am wondering if I should also include Regulation 8 as the tenancy agreement is a ‘sham’.

    The signed tenancy agreement states that a ‘£400 bond is required prior to the start of the agreement and the landlord has a right to keep the bond if believes repairs are needed to the property when terminating the contract’. However, no bond was paid as it was agreed that the claimant could buy carpets in lieu of the bond (even though the tenancy agreement advises that there are no carpets in the property).

    The tenancy agreement advises that the tenant must give 4 weeks notice if terminating the contract but does not include a notice period for the landlord to terminate. Furthermore, there is no period stated or address given for the landlord.

    The amount of rent also differs from that advised to us by telephone in September to that displayed on the TA dated August, provided to us in October.

    A new tenancy agreement has been supplied in February, the commencement date is blank but it is signed in February 2024. I do not know why this new agreement has been created or supplied but it no longer contains a requirement for a bond, the landlords boat address is now given, along with his requirement to give 3 months notice to terminate. On the whole, all other terms remain unchanged.

    The landlord is the claimants dad – he is also still using the address for post as he lives on a narrow boat, although it is on a permanent, residential mooring. He took out a mobile phone contract at the address in March this year.

    Any thoughts, comments or suggestions welcomed. Do the above issues with the tenancy agreement(s) constitute a ‘sham’?

    • This topic was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by clareb.
    John Boxall

    What you need to do is go through the legal requirements line by line to check that the tenancy complies with these

    Are there Gas & Electric Safety Tests, Have Right to Rent checks been undertaken, have the mortgagees given their consent, does the property have landlord insurance etc etc

    If any of these have not been done then it fails the Commerciality test

    I suggest however that as the ‘Bond’ isnt in an approved scheme it has already failed

    I would also suggest doing a credit check for Dad – your Council Tax team should be able to do it to see what if anything else he has against him at that address, in particular anything to do with car insurance

    Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery. The blossom is blighted, the leaf is withered, the god of day goes down upon the dreary scene, and—and in short you are for ever floored.

    Wilkins Micawber, Ch12 David Copperfield


    Hi John,

    Thank you for your response. I am happy we have enough with non commerciality to be honest – she had the keys since June but the tenancy didn’t start until she ended her council tenancy. Proof that electric is in her name is not dated until 30/10/23 stating ‘welcome to your new home’, the tenancy started on 18/08/23.

    We do have a gas safety certificate but that is dated October, after we had asked for one. Also, the address for the landlord on that is given as the property address. Wasn’t aware of the Right to Rent checks tbh, there isn’t a mortgage and we didn’t ask about landlord insurance. Thank you for those points.

    Do you have any thoughts on Reg 8? It always confuses me a little, does the face that one of the terms stated is never going to be adhered to make it a sham?

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