Property litigation specialist Harpreet Lehal of Brady Solicitors explains the major changes to the Section 8 Notice that landlords need to serve to recover rent arrears on Assured Shorthold Tenancies.
Rent arrears have a big impact and even two or three months of arrears can mean a landlord loses essential income for a property. With persistent rent arrears on an Assured Shorthold Tenancy, the landlord has the option of serving a Section 8 Notice to gain possession.
It’s important for landlords to be aware of new regulations that mean the previous forms of the Section 8 Notice are no longer valid.
New prescribed forms for notices given under ASTs
Since April 2016 there have been new prescribed forms for notices given under ASTs in accordance with the delightfully named ‘Assured Tenancies and Agricultural Occupancies (Forms) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2016’.
Essentially this means that, for Section 8 Notices to be effective, landlords must use these new prescribed forms without altering any of the wording or format of the form.
With these new regulations in place, landlords using older or existing forms the Section 8 Notice will find their notices are invalid, leading to failed possession applications, wasted costs and a delay in gaining possession of the building or flat.
Section 8 advice for landlords
In the face of these new AST regulations we advise landlords to review the new Section 8 form against their current practice to ensure they are familiar with how they need to comply with the changes.