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UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 4312
Experience:  English solicitor with over 12 years experience
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Hallo, Could you help to clarify a point: can a freeholder

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Could you help to clarify a point: can a freeholder amend the conditions of lease (made some 20 years previously) without an agreement of a leaseholder? If changes are made, but not officially served on a leaseholder with a possibility of time-limited recourse, is this legally valid?

I am a leaseholder of 20 years and last September I received an informal e-mail from a freeholder with a draft of a Declaration of Trust, from which this is an excerpt:

“Declaration of Trust
The Trustees shall hold the freehold estate in the Property conveyed to them by the Transfer on trust for the tenants from time to time of the two flats known as flat 1 and flat 2 comprised in the Property and the occupier of flat 3 in the Property as demised by the Leases and to discharge the duties and exercise the powers of the Landlord under the Leases. At the date of this declaration flat 3 does not own any share in the Property”.

My flat is No.3. Am I a Trustee or not? Should I have been formally served this document and signed if accepted? I have never received any formal document from the freeholder solicitors.

Since, the problems have arisen as to the responsibilities and the rights of respective parties.
Can you help? I can attach the entire draft if needed.

Yours faithfully,
Eva Corsack

No, you would not be a Trustee unless you were named as such in the Declaration.

It seems that you are only being sent the draft for your information, you are not required to sign it or anything, it is a private matter between the freeholder and whoever is being made the trustees of the property.

The leaseholder's approval is not required to the declaration of trust being made by the freeholder but the leaseholder's approval would be required to any variation of the leaseholder's lease unless the lease expressly gives the freeholder the right to vary it without the leaseholder's consent.

May I help further?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Many thanks for this. I have one more question:

The wording of my original deeds is rather imprecise. Although it says that the expenses for the maintenance of the building are divided equally between 3 flats, it does not say who arranges the repairs and who chooses workmen. The problem never arose before as there had been a very harmonious co-operation with the previous freeholder. While she usually instigated the repairs, there were appropriate consultations and decisions were made by consensus. Not any more.

Can freeholders impose their decision on a leaseholder (without consultation, without giving any details about prospective workmen or the extent of work to be done) and demand payment?



It depends on the terms of your lease but the freeholders actions appear to be unreasonable.

All the best
UKSolicitorJA and other Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you!

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I have at least one more important question. For this you might need to know the background of the case (I have a resume) . What is the best way forward?

Please open a new question and ask for UKSolicitorJA only to answer. I am going offline shortly but will pick up your question later.