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JimLawyer
JimLawyer, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
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Experience:  Senior Associate Solicitor
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I am a director of an RTM company, we have a contract with a

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I am a director of an RTM company, we have a contract with a managing agent since 2018 which manage the block on our behalf, however 5 out of the 8 leaseholders either havent paid their service charges (since 2018) or have contributed very little. In 2019 the managing agent instructed solicitors to reclaim the outstanding charges. So far, we have received no money back and the managing agent has notified us that they are terminating their contract (as per the ts&cs) giving us 3 months notice - I believe this is because they arent seeing any money coming in. Any advice on what we can do? Can we dissolve the RTM company and hand full responsibility back to the Freeholder? The cases against 5 leaseholders are still with our solicitors, how do we continue to pursue these? Many thanks, Tom.
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Hello, this is Jim and welcome to JustAnswer. I will be the lawyer working with you today.
Sorry to hear of the issue. I will set out my written answer shortly.

You could dissolve the RTM and management then reverts to the freeholder, yes. However the landlord will need to also agree to this.

You can involve the First Tier (Property) Tribunal in the dispute. You mention a solicitor acting for you - presumably you have not asked them about this yet?. You should ensure you do not breach the terms of your retainer with your solicitor by looking for advice elsewhere - however this site is an internet forum and not a law firm - we do not give legal advice but information and guidance from a legal standpoint.

The tribunal route is quicker than the county court claims procedure and it's one form which you will need to complete and send to your regional tribunal. The tribunal will then make a decision and indeed it has the power to appoint or remove a management company for another one to ensure good management of the property. I would say this is the best option here.

The Tribunal is made up of 3 people: A lawyer (Chairman), a surveyor/valuer (who could also be Chairman), and a lay person (member of the public). You can present the dispute to them in person or use a firm (such as either of these law firms : https://www.bishopslaw.co.uk/first-tier-tribunal-property-chamber-advice/ or www.bradysolicitors.com who have a specialist department for these Tribunal claims). The latter firm also offers a free guide on how to change managing agents :
https://www.bradysolicitors.com/taking-back-control/changing-managing-agent/

The hearing itself is quite informal. Once made, the order is then binding - if the order is ignored then the county court will recognise it and you can apply for an injunction to force them to comply.

You will need to fill out the relevant form and then email it to your regional Tribunal. The Tribunal should then make a decision within 6-8 weeks. Given the fact solicitors are involved already and the fact you are a director of the RTM, you should really consult a law firm to help with this - either the one which you alluded to in your question, or one of the above law firms would be fine.

I hope this helps and answers the question - my goal is to ensure you are happy with the answer and have the information you need. If you have any follow up questions then please let me know. I will reply as soon as I can to help with any further queries.

Many thanks,
Jim

Please let me know if the answer helped or if you need me to cover anything else?. I am happy to clarify the answer or if you have any follow up questions. If so, I’d be grateful if you would let me know. I am free most days, including weekends, so feel free to ask me anything you are unsure of.

Best wishes,

Jim

JimLawyer, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 14731
Experience: Senior Associate Solicitor
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