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UKSolicitorJA
UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 4312
Experience:  English solicitor with over 12 years experience
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If an owner of a leasehold property (i.e. a holiday lodge)

Resolved Question:

If an owner of a leasehold property (i.e. a holiday lodge) has reason to believe that the Service Charge is not being spent appropriately and the Landlord refuses to provide access to the accounts/receipts, as required by law, what self-help options are available before resorting to a Tribunal.
The lease states that the Service Charge must be paid annually in advance.
What is the owner's rights if he/she suspects fraud and withholds payment?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  UKSolicitorJA replied 3 years ago.
Hello,
The owner may get a solicitor to write a letter to the landlord asking for statements of account as required by law and point out the owner's legal rights should the landlord fail to provide the requested accounts.
In the event of suspected fraud, a report may be made to the police as fraud is a criminal offence under the Fraud Act 2006.
May I help further?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The Residents Association has made numerous requests to the Landlord (site owner) to provide accounts/receipts, including via a solicitor, but have been ignored for the last service year to 30 June 2014 as well as for the previous year to 30 June 2013 and also the one before that.

The information I require is the legal position if lodge owners choose not to pay the service charge until the accounts/receipts for previous years have been provided.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Unable to rate response until answer is provided.

Please see my response.

Expert:  UKSolicitorJA replied 3 years ago.
You may withhold payment of the service charge until they comply to put pressure on them to comply.
It is an offence under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 for a landlord not to provide a summary of service charge accounts within a period of 1 month of the demand or within 6 months of the end of the accounting year, which ever is later.
You may complain to the local authority as they have the power to enforce or you may enforce directly in court.
Hope this clarifies
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