Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practicing lawyer in England with over 10 years experience.
May I ask if you had any bills or bank statements of any kind sent to the address please? Did you register to vote?
My mother fell ill a year ago and I moved back from Sweden to help her. I have always been registered at this address as I grew up there. I did register to vote from there but only recently. I seem to be falling one month short of the 12 months that I am being asked for.
Thank you. Did you actually move back in with her more than 12 months ago? If so was this only a little more than 12 months ago?
I moved back in with her 15 months ago, but kept traveling back to Sweden to visit my 6 year old child. I want my family to move over to me if I can get a succession. Even my student loan states that I have a histoy at this address.
Thanks. You need to be able to demonstrate on the balance of probability that you spent most of your time at that address for at least 12 months - i.e. treated it as your main home for that period. You can do this in a number of ways. You can make a statutory declaration which is evidence on oath with a solicitor that you have done so. In addition ideally you would have some further documentary evidence of your residence. This would typically be a utility bill but failing which could be bank or financial accounts, registration to vote, registration with a doctors surgery, credit applications from that address and so on.
If you have none of this available, if you can obtain statements from independent neighbours that could confirm your residency.
I have been registered at the doctors and dentist for just under 40 years. Will this do? Legally speaking of course.
If you accept that you have moved out an old registration many years ago will not assist. If you notified them that you were back living in the property and for example attended appointments every so often this may be helpful though.
Lastly, the annoying this is... I'm sure my name was on the origional tenancy agreement along with my mothers. Only the Housing association inform that they have lost that document and do not have a copy. Can I do anything about this?
Do you have any evidence ever of paying any rent directly to the HA that you could produce?
(or originally council)?
No I don't. Also, if I get the succession... can I get out from under the managment of the housing association... Anyone who loses their tennants tenancy agreements I don't want to have anything to do with.
Unfortunately if they have lost the agreement there is no punitive action that can be taken, however equally if you claim to have been a joint tenant they cannot prove otherwise by the loss of the document. However it would be for you to produce some evidence that you were a tenant in the absence of the document which would typically be the payment of rent to the landlord.
If the property is a HA property it is not possible to remove them unless you can exercise a right to buy the property at a later date when of course it becomes yours. It is possible to hold the HA to account thoughh in terms of any complaints by referring such complaints to the Housing Ombudsman
Thank you. You have been a great help.
I hope you are able to put together something that shows on the balance of probability that you have been living there for 12 months.
If you made any application for and financial products including insurance check out your credit report as this may show searches against that address under your name
I do have a bill that states that I took over that bill payment 11 months ago. I will also look into the other areas that you suggested.
Thank you for checking in on me. Fortunately, I called British Gas and they have me listed from 15 months ago and so they are sending me a copy of that bill.
My local housing association do not want me to succeed the apartment and they have done this to a number of other successions. So I will get back to you when they throw me my next curve ball!!
Hi again Joshua,
Now the housing association manager (Laura) is asking for yet more evidence even through I thought I had met the criteria.
I have pasted our last few emails below... is she stepping over the mark legally? even through her tone is aggressive and hostile, knowing that my mother has just passed away.
I initially wrote...
I can confirm that 6 Blore Close was my principle home 12 months prior to my my mother passed away. I do however return to visit my daughter and fiancee whenever possible. Well at least until they can move to the UK with me on a full time basis. I did notify your office that I had moved back some time ago, only I didn't do it in writing. My apologies.
Thank you for considering my application for a succession. In order to get the succession started...
Please find the attached documentation:
Which has been counter signed by the local job centre advisor. You see as soon as I was aware that my mother was in need of help due to her illness, I moved all business operations back with me. I'm a full time artist and was lucky enough to be able to get state help from the local job centre 12 months prior to my mother's death.
A DVLA provisional driver's license that states 6 Blore Close as my home address.
Regarding the Utility bill and Bank statement that you have requested, I am meeting my mother/ myself bank manager shortly and will obtain written proof/ statement from him then. I will of course send over this documentation along with the British Gas documentation.
Is all the above acceptable?
Reply from Laura stated.
Thank you for your email and attachments. As advised in my letter you will need to satisfy Wandsworth Council that you have been residing at Blore Close as your only or principal residence for 12 months prior to your mother passing away. My understanding is that Sweden was your permanent residence.
As requested you need to make an appointment to see me with the relevant documentation for the last 12 months. What you have currently provided is not adequate proof.
Thank you for your email (23 April 2014) and indeed for your kind patients regarding my reply. I'm sure you can appreciate that I'm still coming to terms over the loss of my mother and I'm still grieving.
To the matters at hand. Please find the attached Gas Bill (that has been counter signed by my local job centre, the bill states the dates of my residence from the 17th of April 2013 - 17th July 2013. I do also have an earlier one, but i'm hoping that this one should suffice) and passport evidence.
Is this adequate proof? If it isn't, please could you kindly let me know why as I can see where I'm going wrong.
Also, I have to state again that you are in error with regards to Sweden being my permanent residence and I can prove that I was residing with my mother 12 months prior to her passing away. In addition to this I am very happy to provide a statutory declaration, (which is evidence on oath with a solicitor) that is of course if you request one. However, I do appreciate your due diligence.
Dear Mr Butterly
Thank you for your email.
The proof you have provided does still not adequately demonstrate that you were living there as your permanent residence. If you live somewhere for a year or more I would expect to see bank statements, utility bills, wage slips for the whole period in your name. Please would you check and see what further proof you can provide?
In the meantime I have asked the Council to undertake some audit checks which should be able to assist with our investigations.
I note that you have still not responded to my request to attend an appointment at this office. I have therefore arranged an appointment at this office for 11.30am on 16 May 2014. If this appointment is not convenient please let me know as soon as possible.
In the meantime I note that the rent of £170 is not being paid apart from a direct debit of £41.08 per every four weeks. The arrears currently stand at £767.86 and you should make arrangements to clear this amount as soon as possible. If you are having trouble paying you should let me know. You maybe entitled to claim housing benefit if you are on a low income.