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Max Lowry
Max Lowry, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 1457
Experience:  LLB, 10 years post qualification experience
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I am an owner of a house and i have a tenant, there is no contract

Customer Question

I am an owner of a house and i have a tenant, there is no contract but recently i was broken into but only my tenants belongings were stolen. The police said there was something suspisious. My tenant is know threatening to sue me. What rights do i have?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Max Lowry replied 3 years ago.

Max Lowry :

Hi, welcome to Just Answer. I will help you with your question.

Max Lowry :

What is the tenant going to sue you for exactly?

Max Lowry :

I can't immediately see why you would be liable to your tenant for a break-in, even a suspicious one!

Customer:

basicly 24hrs after the break in after the police had came for forensic evidence she was asking my to claim on my house insurance. I said no because the were not my property. She is now just saying she is going to take me to court i dont understand what she can take me to court for. Is there any way she can sue me ?

Max Lowry :

No, I don't see what she can sue you for here either. She sounds a little like a dodgy tenant, but even if this is a false claim (?) then it's nothing to do with you. I think you just need to ask her why she thinks she can sue you, and then deny that you're liable. I can't see why you would be liable to be honest, so I wouldn't worry about being sued. Sadly, too many people try to exploit the small claims system, why you can sue with impunity and without fear of costs being made against you if you lose (usually!).

Customer:

So basicly she has no grounds to sue me. The thing i worry about is there was a window left open up stairs were they got in, Then they steal her ipad laptop and tv but not one of my own belongings were stolen?

Customer:

What legal rights does a tenant have also ?

Max Lowry :

Legal rights about what, stolen goods?

Max Lowry :

They have no rights against you, the landlord.

Max Lowry :

Thats why they need insurance.

Customer:

Did i need to tell her that when she first became a tenant, did i need to tell her she was not insured

Max Lowry :

Not unless you agreed to give her insurance. You don't have to insure her. You only need to worry if you promised her that you would insure her.

Max Lowry :

Does this answer your question this evening, can I give you more information on anything specific?

Customer:

i did not promise anything, this is all the same with a tenant living with the landlord yes?

Max Lowry :

Yes, it is. It all comes down to the initial contract that you have, and without promising to insure her contents, then there is nothing to worry about.

Max Lowry :

Because, you see, by not having insurance, you're not in the wrong. There is no obligation to have contents insurance at all.

Customer:

i dont have a contract at all with the tenant

Customer:

could you give me a list of a tenants rights and also a list of landlord rights please? if this is not to much hassle

Max Lowry :

Well, there you go. I don't think you have anything to worry about.

Max Lowry :

I'm not sure I can give you a list of rights for landlord and tenants.

Max Lowry :

This comes down to the contract you enter into.

Max Lowry :

The only right that otherwise exists is the right not to unlawfully be evicted.

Max Lowry :

Which is a statutory right.

Customer:

if i ask my tenant to leave and she agrees can she sue me for being unlawfully evicted

Max Lowry :

No, but if she lives with you in your home, then she has no protection anyway. This is the one exemption from the usual rule on eviction.

Max Lowry :

If somebody lives with you as a lodger then you can just give them 7 days notice or so and change the locks without anything more.

Customer:

thank you very much for such useful advise i don't think theres anything else i need to know on this subject is there? You have been very useful thank you.

Max Lowry :

Nothing more I can think of!

Max Lowry :

Thanks for asking a question - please do remember to rate my answer highly.

Max Lowry :

Thanks! Have a good evening.

Customer:

thank you and i will.

Max Lowry, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 1457
Experience: LLB, 10 years post qualification experience
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