How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Ash Your Own Question
Ash, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10916
Experience:  Solicitor with 5+ years experience
Type Your Law Question Here...
Ash is online now

My husband and I have applied for sheltered housing and have

This answer was rated:

My husband and I have applied for sheltered housing and have received an offer from a charity social housing landlord. The application for housing form I originally filled in, applying for sheltered housing, asked several questions that began "do you, or does anyone in your household..." It then said "do you have an unspent criminal conviction?" I do not have an unspent criminal conviction, so I answered "no", but my husband does however. I alone signed this form.
We have now received the tenancy agreement, which has been made out in both our names and it appears that we both have to sign it. If we do so, will we be breaking the law, whereby we could be evicted under Ground 17 of the Housing Act if it came to light? Can I sign the tenancy in my own name, and if so, would the outcome be the same.
Alex Watts : Hello my name is ***** ***** I will help you with this. Please note that I am a working Solicitor and may be on and offline as I have to attend Court and meet with clients, even at weekends. As such you may not get an instant response when you reply, but rest assured I will be giving your question my immediate attention upon return You do not need to wait here as you will get an email when I reply.
Alex Watts : What conviction does your husband have, what did he get and when was it please?
Customer: It is an unspent conviction for violence. What bearing does this have on a tenancy agreement
Alex Watts : You are sure it is unspent?
Customer: Yes.
Alex Watts : Ok. When will it be spent?
Customer: Never
Alex Watts : oh I see. In that case you should declare it in the event that they do find out.
Alex Watts : Even if you alone sign the tenancy agreement i
Alex Watts : It does state anyone in the household.
Alex Watts : So if you intended to live together as man and wife then sadly even if he is not named, it asks anyone in the household.
Alex Watts : Of course you don't want to be victim to ground 17
Customer: No, it does not state. "Anyone in the household" please see my original question. It says "do you have a unspent criminal conviction"
Alex Watts : Your original question says do you, or does anyone in your household and asks questions.
Alex Watts : What are under those questions please?
Alex Watts : Do you or anyone in the household
Customer: Alex, there are a number of questions on the form that begin "do you, or any of your household ..."
Alex Watts : Yes what are they please?
Customer: there are a number of questions that begin "do you, or any of your household..." This is followed by a question that says "do you have any unspent convictions"
Alex Watts : Look, but in the list of do you or anyone have, there is nothing applying to convictions?
Alex Watts : this one that asks if you have any is after the you or anyone else?
Customer: The question simply states do you have any other spent convictions.
Alex Watts : Ok.
Alex Watts : And nothing about convictions in the you or anyone else question list?
Customer: all of the questions above state do you or anyone else in your household have four example as Bos, be evicted etc
Alex Watts : Good. In that case it is poor drafting. I am sure they meant to ask do you or anyone else have convictions
Alex Watts : If you sign it alone then you do not risk ground 17
Alex Watts : You hAve not lied or misled.
Alex Watts : If they wanted to ask if anyone else had convictions they should draft the application properly.
Alex Watts : They do not.
Alex Watts : Therefore you can sign it and not be foul of ground 17
Alex Watts : If it has asked if you or anyone in the household - that would be different.
Alex Watts : But it does not.
Customer: The first set of questions on the form begin "have you, or anyone in your household"
Alex Watts : Therefore you can sign it.
Alex Watts : But the second is just do you have unspent, right?
Alex Watts : If this is the case that is fine.
Alex Watts : You are not misleading in any way.
Alex Watts : Can I clarify anything for you about this today please?
Customer: the first set of questions on the form begin "do you or anyone I. Your household" the next set of questions begin "do you"
Alex Watts : Ok. Then as long as do you and then spent convictions you are ok,
Alex Watts : Does that clarify matters for you please?
Customer: Sorry I do not understand your sentence
Alex Watts : ok. If the question was do you have any unspent convictions and you said no - you are fine.
Alex Watts : Does that help?
Customer: Our original question. Was that if both of us signed the tenancy agreement on Monday as joint tenants, would we be open to breaking housing act reg. 17, opening us to eviction? The tenancy agreement says that whenever it says the words "you, yours" it means both tenants. It refers to the possibility of eviction under reg. 17 of the housing act if we have lied on the application form to get housed with them. I.e. Since I filled out the application. In my own name only, surely I could insist the tenancy agreement be in my name. The housing manager said he would have to check with the lettings officer to see if this was possible.
Alex Watts : yes if both sign you run the risk because you could interpreted as either party.
Alex Watts : Therefore it should be in your sole name.
Alex Watts : If only you applied and it was awarded just to you then it can be in your sole name
Alex Watts : Does that clarify for you?
Customer: Regardless that I filled in the application form and husband is living with me as my "household".?
Alex Watts : Yes
Alex Watts : Because the question wording on the application form.
Alex Watts : If they wanted to know whether all persons had unspent it should have said so.
Alex Watts : It does not
Customer: Just to clarify. If I get the tenancy in my own name then all is okay. If the tenancy is in both names, we run the risk. The application form says "give the following details for you and your household and the relationship to you, the applicant." With regard to law, is it mandatory that husband and wife have to be joint tenants, even though only one has signed the housing application form as I did?
Alex Watts : Correct.
Alex Watts : Your husband has never been asked.
Alex Watts : As I said its poor drafting.
Alex Watts : Does that clarify?
Customer: Is it mandatory that married couples have to sign a joint tenancy agreement even though only one signed the original application for housing for
Alex Watts : There is no law that states this.
Customer: Can you answer my question please
Ash and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Yes I said there is no law that require this