Painsmith Landlord and Tenant Blog

A practitioners landlord and tenant law blog from PainSmith Solicitors

Attention all Landlords!

We draw your attention to this recent decision of the Upper Tribunal which has caused a stir amongst leasehold lawyers in relation to service charges.

Section 47 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987 (LTA1987) provides that where any written demand is given to a tenant of residential leasehold property, then that demand must contain:

a) the name and address of the landlord and
b) if that address is not in England and Wales, an address for service.

Section 47 goes on to provide in subsection 2 that any part of the amount demanded that consists of a service charge will not be treated as being due until such information is furnished by notice given by the landlord to the tenant.

In Beitov Properties Ltd v Elliston Martin it has been decided that the wording of section 47 LTA 1987 means that where any written demand is given to the tenant the Landlord must put his or her actual address on the demand, not a care of address or agent’s address. A demand for service charges will be invalid without.

According to the Tribunal “The purpose of the requirement in section 47 to include in any demand the name and address of the landlord, in my judgment, is to enable a tenant to know who his landlord is, and a name alone may not be sufficient for this purpose. To provide an address at which the landlord can be found assists in the process of identification”.

It is noted however that the sanction for failing to give the actual landlords address in section 47 of the LTA 1987 is that service charges are not due. Nothing is said about rent and as such we are of the opinion that where you have an AST landlords and agents can continue to use care of addresses. If the position changes we will of course let you know.

Most people are aware also aware of section 48 LTA 1987. Therefore to complete this article we should mention subsection (1) which requires a landlord to furnish the tenant with an address for service, which can be a care of address or agent’s address but must be an address in England and Wales. Unless and until the landlord gives an address for service in England and Wales then rent will not be treated as falling due.

Filed under: England & Wales, FLW Article, ,

3 Responses

  1. Chris White says:

    Hi there. With reference to your article dated 16.05.12 re S.47 LTA 1987 and the need to disclose a landlord’s name and address following the recent Beitov Properties Ltd case, I was wondering if you have any further comments or have there been further developments, as there is now some uncertainty amongst landlords in relation to ASTs and notices generally dealt with by agents.

    By the way, in the article you say ” It is noted however that the sanction for failing to give the actual landlords address in section 47 of the LTA 1987 is that service charges are due.” – Shouldn’t that be “are not due”?

    I’m an accountant acting for a number of property owning clients.

    Many thanks

    Chris White.

  2. PainSmith says:

    After the initial uncertainty it now seems settled that with ASTs there are no sanctions for not giving the actual address according to s47 LTA1987. In other words there is the requirement to give the actual address on a written demand, but it is only the amount that consists of a service charge that is treated as not being due under s47(2).

    Thanks for pointing out the typo – it has been corrected.

  3. Oliver says:

    So, as today, is a notice for payment of RENT made without name and address of landlord valid?

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