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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71137
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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I asked a question two weeks ago and was grateful for the answer.

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I asked a question two weeks ago and was grateful for the answer. It related to access by trading standards animal welfare officers to my residence under the animal welfare act 2006. They need a warrant under the act and have accessed my premisis on numerous occations without one. On one occasion they found a small box of out of date medicines
in my garage. They claim they do not need a warrant because of this because my residence is being used as part of the farm I own next door. I think this is rubbish and if no
do you know the relevant legislation they can use to change the status of my residence and
avoid the protection afforded to me under the animal welfare act 2006.Is there any case law on this one way or another. When Trading Standards have difficulty accessing domestic premises they can call on the police who are able to gain entry how can they do this.

Thank you for your question. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.

Are you hoping to prevent them gaining access for the future?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Yes they think they can access at will regardless of the need for a warrant although they have not done so for several years.I think this is harassment and a breach of my rights under the Human rights act 1991

because of the constant threat.


If these are trading standards officers then they do need a warrant or a police constable to force entry under his powers under PACE.

What they sometimes say with situations like this though is that home owners consented to the entry basically because people do sometimes agree to avoid being the subject of a warrant.

Ultimately though, you cannot get a court order to stop them doing something unlawful. What you can do is refuse entry and if they force entry then sue them.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

What can I sue them for ( what would be the courses of action) and what are the time limits.

Is constantly maintaining that the unlawful action is a right they poses a breach of the human rights act (section 8) and in fact a form of harassment under the harrisment act.

Is there any case law that I could use to show they can not change the classification of my domestic dwelling to that of a farm because it suits them to do so.

It depends on your losses. You would have a claim in trespass and possibly in harassment.

You could argue it amounts to a S8 breach but that isn't a cause of action in itself.

There isn't case law on this specific point. However, if this is a farm then they can rely on S28 here

which does give them additional powers.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

My farm is next door, the property they keep accessing is my domestic residence. They deam parts of my domestic residence is in fact part of my farm because they found a small box of medicines in my garage.

Does section 28 give them the right to change the classisfication of my

residence at will.? or anything else.

What do you mean that a breach of section 8 is not a couse of action. please advise what is under section8 in this context./

? Ta

Well, it depends if its deemed a 'farm premises'.

They will be saying the fact that you are keeping medicines used on the farm there suggests that it is.

S28[3] says they cannot enter private dwelling so that is obviously what is in dispute.

Its really a question for a court. It could go either way really. A court may say that its clearly a dwelling or it may say that because you are storing items there it must be commercial. I think that a reasonable court would say that the fact that you are storing a small amount of goods there does not necessarily mean its not a dwelling.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I am not storing items .I put a small box of medcines in my garage prior

to disposal. The property is my domestic residence and surley they must go to court before unilaterally deem in that it is part of the farm and ignoring the need for a warrant , Surly that is the reason for the warrant provision in the act.

Are you telling me you do not know?

Its as I've said really.

Whether this is a dwelling or not is for a court to determine. They will argue its not because of the medicines. You would argue that it is for the reasons that you mention and it could go either way.

I cannot guarantee the view of the court.

In truth, if anything is found there at all then a Court could well that is covered with S28.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

I understand that you can do whatever you like on a domestic residence provided it is incidental to the main perpose of the dwelling. it is still a dwelling and a warrant is required to entre. Otherwise anyone who takes work home potentially changes the status of the residence.My residence is registered as a domestic residence , not a farm and a box of obsolete medicines does not make it a farm. What is the reasoning behind your


No, but it does mean its not being used solely as a dwelling and therefore they may reasonably take the view that evidence is to be found there.

I'm really sorry but I will not be able to tell you that there is no chance at all that the Court would think that S28 applies.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Sorry I must come back to you on the issue of Solely . The AWA does not mention soley it does say used for their perpose referring to ones garage. I still use my garage as a garage, Yes it may well indicate that

items relating to the farm may be put on my domestic residence but it does not give a legal right to access without a warrant. It may be justification for a warrant. I do not think the Trading standards officers

can unilaterally make the decision but perhapse a court could but based on what chriteria.What are the criteria in determining if parts of my domestic residence are in fact a farm and not just storage for obsolute items.I am trying to get a handle on the judjment chriteria.

No, it doesn't use the term 'solely'. That would be for a court to interpret.

However, I am afraid that I cannot agree that a court would say that the fact that this is a dwelling home means that it cannot be searched if it is used in another capacity.

The legislation is clearly worded in a way that implies that it must be solely used as a dwelling and I suspect a court would say that it must.
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