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Landlord Granted Dispensation from Consultation Requirements

Under Section 20 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, landlords must consult with leaseholders before carrying out works on a building that will cost any one leaseholder more than £250, or risk being unable to recover any costs above that amount. However, it is sometimes possible to obtain a dispensation from the consultation requirements, as a recent First-tier Tribunal (FTT) decision demonstrates.

The landlord of a residential block with six leaseholders applied to the FTT to dispense with the consultation requirements in respect of urgent works to the property following a leak. Section 20ZA of the Act empowers the FTT to grant dispensation if it considers it reasonable to do so. The works, which had already been carried out, consisted of remedying damp and redecorating part of the hallway and three walls, at a cost of £2,350 plus VAT. The FTT directed that the application be publicised in the block.

The landlord had not confirmed that the application had been publicised in the common parts of the block as directed. However, the FTT was satisfied that the leaseholders had been notified, and therefore waived the breach of the directions. The FTT found that the works were urgently required and the landlord had acted reasonably.

None of the leaseholders had objected to the application and the FTT did not identify any prejudice it caused them. The FTT observed that the leaseholders still enjoyed protection under the Act in respect of whether any resulting service charges were reasonable or payable, a question that was outside the scope of the application. The dispensation was granted.

Published in
1 July 2024
Last Updated
19 July 2024