In April 2017 new legislation came into force allowing tenants to apply to Get their Rent Back from criminal landlords using Rent Repayment Orders (RROs). A RRO forces the landlord to repay up to 12 months' rent for a variety of offences including harassment, illegal eviction, violence for securing entry, ignoring council orders and for failing to license.
The most common offence is failure to license a rental property. Many properties in the UK, especially London, need a licence. Licensed properties have to comply with strict Health, Safety and Fire regulations. But often landlords don't bother: it's expensive, it's a hassle and it opens properties up to inspection by the Local Authority. Before the new laws, there were very few convictions of landlords for not licensing: so there's a lot of sub-standard and downright dangerous properties out there.
A landlord that lets an unlicensed property is committing an offence. Actually, a criminal offence.
The new legislation now means you can apply to Get your Rent Back if you find you have been living in a property that should have been licensed but wasn't and/or for any of the above mentioned offences.
In order to get your rent back you need to make a RENT REPAYMENT ORDER (RRO) application. For more detail on RRO's look here
How we can help you...
Although the Government has given tenants these new powers, they haven't given them much else. Tenants cannot get Legal Aid to make a RRO application. Hiring a solicitor may be more expensive than the eventual rental award and it is a specialist area of law: not many solicitors have experience in this field. There are some bureaucratic and language hurdles too.
Flat Justice can help in 2 ways...
We give you enough information on this site to help you make an RRO application yourself: the DIY route. We also offer FREE email and telephone support throughout the application process.
We can represent you in an application on a reasonable "No-Win-No-Fee" basis (see Terms & Conditions):
we will pay for your application fee and hearing fee upfront (£300)
we will fill out the paperwork and gather the evidence, putting it all in the correct format (you will need to provide us with evidence of a suitable quality, of course: see especially 1. in our "RRO step-by-step" page)
we will attend the Case Management Conference for you
we will submit the evidence bundles (5 bound copies)
we will negotiate for you in a settlement agreement (if both parties want to avoid the hearing) and keep you informed of the progress
we will attend the hearing tribunal and argue your case for you against the landlord and before the judges
to cover our costs we will make a charge of 20% of your RRO award. You do not pay any fee if there is no RRO award or settlement agreement. The fee is deducted after the award or settlement payment has been received. No win no fee! (see Terms & Conditions).
This service helps to fund our free advice and support our public awareness campaigns.