Converting a service charge arrears judgment into payment

Brady Solicitors’ Caroline Lee has converted a judgment into payment on some long-standing service charge arrears, resulting in a happy client and relieved leaseholders.

The case involved nearly a decade’s worth of arrears on a flat owned by a deceased leaseholder, who had purchased the property in 2005 and passed away shortly after. The flat was then let out to a tenant and the service charge arrears began to mount up.

The managing agent had successfully secured two judgments for payment of the arrears, one in 2011 and another in 2014, by which point the arrears had passed £19,500.

The deceased’s estate was however refusing the pay the arrears until the property was sold and the managing agents were hitting a brick wall.

Maintenance of the block was suffering drastically and the impact was being felt across the whole development. The agent had previously instructed solicitors however they had been unable to secure payment and the mortgage company was also in the process of looking into repossessing the property.

So, in May 2014, the managing agent took the step of instructing Brady Solicitors’ specialist service charge team.

By early July, Caroline Lee had secured full payment of all the arrears, interests and costs. So how did she do it?

‘Having firstly done my best to speak with deceased’s solicitors, I then got in touch with the mortgage company,’ explained Caroline.

‘The lender was being quite adamant that they would not pay the arrears until the flat was sold. As the property was not yet even on the market, the managing agents were understandably reluctant to agree to this. I negotiated with them over a period of two to three weeks, explaining the detrimental effect that the arrears were having on the property as a whole and that the block was about to lose its maintenance services.

‘Pleasingly, the mortgage company agreed that it was in their best interests to settle the debt immediately and we were able to arrange for a transfer of funds into our client’s account.’

Open communications and no need for possession proceedings

This case highlights the Brady Solicitors approach of open communications. By maintaining open dialogue with key parties we can achieve a highly successful outcome without the need to resort to costly or unpleasant possession proceedings.

Time to test us out?

If you’d like Brady Solicitors to help you with a difficult service charge case please do get in touch. Contact us on 0115 985 3450 or drop us an email – we’d be pleased to show you what we’re made of.

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With hundreds of years’ worth of combined experience, our experts have dealt with nearly every leasehold property matter you can imagine. If you’re currently in need of legal support or advice, please get in touch.

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