L/L wants supported accommodation status for pre-existing tenant

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    We have a large RP who are buying properties in our area with ‘sitting tenants’ – they have approached us to say they want to ‘convert’ some of the tenancies to supported accommodation tenancies as the residents need support.

    The LL will be providing the care, support & supervision so it will be classed as ‘exempt accommodation’ – on initial enquiry we have said the tenancies cannot be converted as the person needs to be admitted to the accommodation for CSS or the LL has to provide accommodation that has been previously agreed as being for ‘supported accommodation’ use. So far the landlord is only using the term ‘Intensive Housing Management’ in respect of these tenancies and we have yet to be given a breakdown of charges and type of support. Some of these tenants are long term residents and we have not been made aware by the previous property owner that there had ever been any problems.

    Any comments gratefully received – if this is covered under caselaw or legislation I am fearful that the RP will try to convert more tenancies and other landlords in the District will do the same.

    Peter Barker

    The definitions of the two main categories of “specified accommodation” do not both include the “admitted” requirement.

    For exempt accommodation, the test is simply that the landlord is the right kind of body and that it provides the claimant with care, support or supervision. There is nothing in that definition that requires the claimant to have been admitted into the accommodation in order to receive that care, support or supervision. Hence, for example, you get cases like CSH/250/2014 where a disabled university student living in halls of residence was found to be occupying exempt accommodation because of the support that she received as a disabled student around campus, and not particularly in her accommodation.

    It is the other category, usually referred to as “managed” accommodation, which requires the claimant to have been admitted into the accommodation in order to meet a need for care, support or supervision. That could be satisfied if the claimant was already receiving C/S/S before the change of landlord.

    I agree that if a landlord takes over a property with a tenant already living there and no support was provided before the new landlord came on the scene, that won’t satisfy the “managed” definition. But if it is going to be the landlord providing the C/S/S, it could satisfy the definition of “exempt accommodation”. Subject to the usual considerations such as the suppor being more than minimal and the claimant genuinely needs it etc.


    Thanks Peter, I will go down the route of is the CSS ‘above minimal’ and genuinely needed on each of the tenancies that they are proposing to convert.

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