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Alice H
Alice H, Solicitor/Partner
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2850
Experience:  Partner in national law firm
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I'm appealing to the property tribunal. I have been given an

Customer Question

I'm appealing to the property tribunal. I have been given an HMO licence for my three storey house. The Council have applied blanket regulations that all three storey HMO's must have smoke alarms in every room. British standard fire regulations say my house should only have smoke alarms in the escape route hall and landings. I say they can't make me fit alarms which are not necessary because I have a human right to the quiet enjoyment of my property.
The tribunal describe the issue as:
"Ensure the house is compliant with Woking Borough Councils approved standards for houses in multiple occupation" and that those standards are reasonable.
I notice the tribunal don't say necessary or proprtionate.
Can you advise? Am I correct, and is there any case law you can refer me to?
Thanks
Mark
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Hello Mark my name is ***** ***** I will help you.Has the Tribunal happened yet please?Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello,No I've just got my first set of dates from them. I have to send in a more detailed case by 9th March.Mark
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Yes the Tribunal is correct.But sadly I think you have appealed when you should have challenged the decision by the Council. My view is that you should seek a Judicial Review of the Council policy.Its the policy you are challenging rather than the individual decision. A Judicial Review is where a High Court considers the decision of the blanket policy by the Council and sees whether its legal and reasonable.The Court will either agree with the decision or remit it back for further consideration.Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
HiIn what way is the Tribunal correct. There hasn't been a hearing yet?
Also, judicial review must be within 3 months of the policy being decided, so I can't do that. The Council say on their notice that I have 28 days to apply to the Property Tribunal to appeal against the licience conditions and the appeals process is set out in Schedule 5 of the Housing Act.I'm afraid I don't think you have the experience in property law to answer my question. Would you care to withdraw and waive your fee?Mark
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
The Tribunal only need to decide whether you have complied with the Councils rules. They can't say whether the rules are right/wrong or whether they are justified.That is Judicial Review. If you are saying you have complied with the Councils rules and the Council are saying you have not then that is why you appeal.But you are disputed the fact the Council want a fire alarm in each room and you say BS Regs say escape routes etc.The Tribunal can't go behind the fact the Council has these rules.You are challenging the rules rather than whether you have complied with the conditions.Does that clarify?Alex
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I can't Judicially Review their policy because it was made more than 3 months ago.
I'm not happy with this. You seem to be recommending something impossible.
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
But you can Judicially Review their decision for your matter. its not a matter which you can take for a Tribunal because of the reasons I have mentioned.You need to challenge the rules, not the fact they apply to you.Therefore you have 3 months from the date of their decision to impose the conditions on you and take the decision. In any event you can seek permission to seek JR out of time.Does that clarify?Alex
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
You can try the chief officer of the Council and Local government Ombudsman. But its the entire policy you want to challenge,Alex
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi AlexThe High Court won't hear a judicial review of objections to a licence condition when I already have a statutory right of appeal to the tribunal under the housing act.I'm sorry, I don't want to continue this conversation. I don't think you have the relevant knowledge to advise me as you claimed and would not want to pay for this at all.Thanks
Mark
Expert:  Ash replied 1 year ago.
Ok - good luck Mark.Alex
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 1 year ago.
Hello,
It seems the professional has left this conversation. This happens occasionally, and it's usually because the professional thinks that someone else might be a better match for your question. I've been working hard to find a new professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right professional can take a little longer than expected.
I wonder whether you're OK with continuing to wait for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will continue my search. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you.
Thank you!
Nicola
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
HiYes I can wait a couple of days.Thanks
Mark
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 1 year ago.
Hello,
We will continue to look for a Professional to assist you.
Thank you for your patience,
Nicola
Expert:  Alice H replied 1 year ago.
My name is ***** ***** I am a lawyer in London. Do you still need help with this? Is your issue with the fitting of the alarms or the policy itself?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Alice
I don't think they should be requiring me to have smoke alarms in nearly every room in my three storey house when British Standards only require alarms in the hallway and landings. So the blanket policy is wrong and the condition on my licence is wrong.
Mark