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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10401
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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I have had my apartment forcibly entered by the police in

Customer Question

I have had my apartment forcibly entered by the police in response to a complaint of water leaking into the apartment below,what are my rights,thanks Jonny
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

Was water leaking into the flat below from your flat? What do you want to know about this?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi ,water was leaking from my daughters flat to the property below, she was contacted by the management company but was abroad, by the time her plumber arrived later that day, the police had been called and forcibly broke in turning the water off and leaving the front door to the property in a wrecked condition, with poor security as they secured with a padlock and haps ,there will be a cost to replace the front door of approx. £1000, do the police have the right to take this action without contacting her I am not sure whether it was the management company or the tenants below who contacted the police,regards Jonny
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

Did the plumber have a key?

Had your daughter told the management company who had the key to get access?

What was the extent of the leak?

If the police had contacted her, what would she have done?

Thank you.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The plumber had access to a key ,the management company were aware of this,as the water was turned off and the police had padlocked the door with a lock that the plumber had no key for I cant comment as to the issue of the water leak as we have only managed to gain access this afternoon !
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If the police had contacted my daughter ,she would have informed them that a plumber had been called out,thanks jonny
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

There is a code of practice with regard to police powers of entry published by the government.

if you turn to paragraph 10 point it does say that the power should only be used and should be proportionate and only with authority unless it’s required urgently to protect life or property from harm.

Depending on the extent of the leak, that may be satisfied. If it was a drip, it is unlikely to be satisfied. If it was running water, then it is.

It is also likely, depending on the reason for the leak, that it is going to be your daughter who is going to be responsible for the damage and repairs to the property below , which could have been more serious had everyone waited for the plumber to arrive.

Until you know the extent of the leak which will be visible depending on the damage the downstairs flat, it’s impossible to say whether the police acted reasonably or not.