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objecting to the registering of a charge against your property


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I am in dispute with the council over demolition of my hotel.

 

Further details are here.

 

Particulars of Claim - uk.legal | Google Groups

 

 

They have sent me a final bill for the demolition for over £61k despite us agreeing a

figure of £25k before the demolition took place.They state in their letter.

 

"The costs of which have been registered in part 2 of the register of local land charges"

 

Question. Can this be objected too ?

 

It then goes on to say.

 

 

"If payment proposals are not made within 14 days of this letter then

i am instructed to register a financial charge against the title to the property".

Question. Can this be prevented ?

 

 

My object is to get them into court to argue the relevent amounts

owed and to which party as they owe me various sums.

 

Thanks in anticipation

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Yes

 

I have a signed letter from the demolition contractor that was witnessed (signed also) by the head of the councils Building Control department stating that it would be no more than £25k

 

So my argument is they are estopped from claiming any more

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This is slightly out of my remit. I do, however, have a magic button that will draw your plight to the rest of the team - I'm hoping that they may be able to give you helping hand with this one.

 

Best wishes,

 

Seq

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Hi, have they already obtained a CCJ?

 

Was the letter from the land registry, or their soliciters.

i will be off site for the next month or so. if you have any problems, feel free to report the post so a moderator can help you.

 

I am not a qualified or practicing lawyer.

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No They only sent me the letter today and there is no ccj registered That is what is confusing me because they didnt even send me an invoice to pay.They just registered the charge i think.

 

The letter was from the legal services department of the Local Authority

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Can you scan up a copy of the letter they sent, MINUS personal details?

 

i really need to know the exact turn of phrase.

i will be off site for the next month or so. if you have any problems, feel free to report the post so a moderator can help you.

 

I am not a qualified or practicing lawyer.

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Dear Madam

 

Re xx-xx xxxxxx rd town

i am aware from the contents of titles xxxxxxxxx,xxxxxxxxx and xxxxxxxx that you are the owner of this property.the council has pursuant to its statutory powers carried out certain works at the property the costs of which have been registered in part 2 of the register of local land charges.

 

Intrest is accruing at 6.3% per annum and the amount requried in full settlement today is £61,155.71 I am prepared to accept payment by instalments If you wish to pay in this way please contact me to discuss an acceptable instalment figure. If payment proposals are not made within 14 days of the date of this letter then i am instructed pursuant to the councils statutory powers to register a financial charge against the title to the property Thereafter the council may exercise its power of sale and thereafter apply the proceeds of the sale towords the discharge of the debt due to the council.

 

If the land certificate or other title deeds and documents are in your possetion please forward them to me Otherwise please let me knowif you are aware of the whareabouts of the deeds.

 

 

please do not hesitate to contact me if you wish to discuss this matter further.

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Sorry tomterm

 

you seem to have misunderstood me That claim is my claim against the council That is why i stated that there are monies due to me

 

That particulars of claim is what i will be sueing the council for when they try to recoup their demolition costs (amongst other things)

 

The council are well aware of the fact i will be sueing them that is why i think they may tried to be a little devious and get the charge registered without giving me the opertunity to defend it.

 

PS it has not been filed yet as i wish them to claim from me and i will counterclaim against them.

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I'm sorry, I just don't know the answer to this. i would recommend contacting the business debt line, since they might be able to help.

i will be off site for the next month or so. if you have any problems, feel free to report the post so a moderator can help you.

 

I am not a qualified or practicing lawyer.

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Thenks for the number Seq but they could not help So i called my lawyer today (member of a large north west firm) and he was unsure if there was anything i could do about it.

 

So it seems it is not a common occurance.Which is a little perplexing and worrying.

 

The good news is he is looking into it this week and going to get back to me So i will keep you posted as it may be of intrest to you guys (and girls)

 

Thanks for the help anyway

 

Cheers

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I am in dispute with the council over demolition of my hotel.

 

Further details are here.

 

Particulars of Claim - uk.legal | Google Groups

 

 

They have sent me a final bill for the demolition for over £61k despite us agreeing a

figure of £25k before the demolition took place.They state in their letter.

 

"The costs of which have been registered in part 2 of the register of local land charges"

 

Question. Can this be objected too ?

 

It then goes on to say.

 

 

"If payment proposals are not made within 14 days of this letter then

i am instructed to register a financial charge against the title to the property".

Question. Can this be prevented ?

 

 

My object is to get them into court to argue the relevent amounts

owed and to which party as they owe me various sums.

 

Thanks in anticipation

 

Section 107 (1) of the Building Act 1984 says:

 

Where a local authority have incurred expenses for whose repayment the owner of the premises in respect of which the expenses were incurred is liable, either under this Act or by agreement with the authority, those expenses, together with interest from the date of service of a demand for the expenses, may be recovered by the authority—

 

(a) from the person who is the owner of the premises at the date on which the works are completed,

 

or

 

(b) if he has ceased to be the owner of the premises before the date on which a demand for the expenses is served, either from him or from the person who is the owner at the date on which the demand is served,

 

and, as from the date of the completion of the works, the expenses and interest accrued due thereon are, until recovered, a charge on the premises and on all estates and interests in them.

 

Has the local authority incurred expense (forget the amount for the moment) under the Act? Yes.

 

Does this mean a charge arises? Yes; the mere fact that expense has been incurred and the work completed creates the charge.

 

Can you do anything to stop the local authority registering the charge as (a) a local land charge or (b) a financial charge? No, because the charge exists and the local authority has the right to register it to protect their interest. Apart from anything else, from what you say, the council is owed at least £25k so they are entitled to a charge for at least that amount. (I have to add that I am uncertain whether, if the charge is a local land charge, it can also be registered as a financial charge - I do not think it needs to be to protect the local authority's interest; the point is rather academic though as, however registered, the charge will come to the notice of a purchaser who makes the proper searches. What can be said for certain is that the local authority is entitled to register something.)

 

Your dispute is as to the amount owed and that will be settled by the court action or agreement. Once that issue is settled and what is due is paid, the charge will be discharged and any registrations in respect of it ought to be cancelled by the local authority.

 

I am puzzled by the local authority's request for the title documents. They do not need them to register their charge at the Land Registry (if the land is registered) or at the Land Charges registry (if unregistered). So far as registered land is concerned land certifcates have been abolished anyway; so far as unregistered land is concerned they would not need to effect a registration if they had the title documents.

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Aequitas

 

Firstly Thank you for your reply it has helped me no end.

 

The only point i wish you to clarify is

 

"Your dispute is as to the amount owed and that will be settled by the court action or agreement."

 

At any point in this do the council have to apply to the court?

 

The point being is if they do i would file a counterclaim and be the defendant or would i have to file my claim and be the claimant ?

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The situation is similar to when you have a mortgage. Say you borrow from a bank and then want to repay. You may have a dispute as to the amount required to redeem the mortgage. You can pay what you think you owe, but the bank can effectively sit back and wait until you pay the whole amount demanded before releasing the mortgage. It would be up to you to go to court demanding that the mortgage be discharged and then the bank would have to defend its position.

 

So what I think you need to concentrate on is agreeing what is owed.

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Hi, Aequitas, in fact the route to liability is fairly complex, from what I can see.

 

Dangerous building—emergency measures.

— (1) If it appears to a local authority that—

(a)

a building or structure, or part of a building or structure, is in such a state, or is used to carry such loads, as to be dangerous, and

 

(b)

immediate action should be taken to remove the danger,

 

 

they may take such steps as may be necessary for that purpose.

 

 

(2) Before exercising their powers under this section, the local authority shall, if it is reasonably practicable to do so, give notice of their intention to the owner and occupier of the building, or of the premises on which the structure is situated.

 

 

(3) Subject to this section, the local authority may recover from the owner the expenses reasonably incurred by them under this section.

 

 

(4) So far as expenses incurred by the local authority under this section consist of expenses of fencing off the building or structure, or arranging for it to be watched, the expenses shall not be recoverable in respect of any period—

(a)

after the danger has been removed by other steps under this section, or

 

(b)

after an order made under section 77(1) above for the purpose of its removal has been complied with or has been executed as mentioned in subsection (2) of that section.

 

 

(5) In proceedings to recover expenses under this section, the court shall inquire whether the local authority might reasonably have proceeded instead under section 77(1) above, and, if the court determines that the local authority might reasonably have proceeded instead under that subsection, the local authority shall not recover the expenses or any part of them.

 

(6) Subject to subsection (5) above, in proceedings to recover expenses under this section, the court may—

(a)

inquire whether the expenses ought to be borne wholly or in part by some person other than the defendant in the proceedings, and

 

(b)

make such order concerning the expenses or their apportionment as appears to the court to be just,

 

 

but the court shall not order the expenses or any part of them to be borne by any person other than the defendant in the proceedings unless it is satisfsied that that other person has had due notice of the proceedings and an opportunity of being heard.

 

(7) Where in consequence of the exercise of the powers conferred by this section the owner or occupier of any premises sustains damage, but section 106(1) below does not apply because the owner or occupier has been in default—

(a)

the owner or occupier may apply to a magistrates’ court to determine whether the local authority were justified in exercising their powers under this section so as to occasion the damage sustained, and

 

(b)

if the court determines that the local authority were not so justified, the owner or occupier is entitled to compensation, and section 106(2) and (3) below applies in relation to any dispute as regards compensation arising under this subsection.

 

 

(8) The proper officer of a local authority may, as an officer of the local authority, exercise the powers conferred on the local authority by subsection (1) above.

 

(9) This section does not apply to premises forming part of a mine or quarry within the meaning of the M1 Mines and Quarries Act 1954.

i will be off site for the next month or so. if you have any problems, feel free to report the post so a moderator can help you.

 

I am not a qualified or practicing lawyer.

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Now, in this case, it appears that the council may have acted somewhat hastily in using s78, since the building had been derelict for many months before the order was issued, and it would have been possible during that period to use s77:

 

77.

Dangerous building.

— (1) If it appears to a local authority that a building or structure, or part of a building or structure, is in such a condition, or is used to carry such loads, as to be dangerous, the authority may apply to a magistrates’ court, and the court may—

(a)

where danger arises from the condition of the building or structure, make an order requiring the owner thereof—

(i) to execute such work as may be necessary to obviate the danger or,

(ii) if he so elects, to demolish the building or structure, or any dangerous part of it, and remove any rubbish resulting from the demolition, or

 

(b)

where danger arises from overloading of the building or structure, make an order restricting its use until a magistrates’ court, being satisfied that any necessary works have been executed, withdraws or modifies the restriction.

 

 

(2) If the person on whom an order is made under subsection (1)(a) above fails to comply with the order within the time specified, the local authority may—

(a)

execute the order in such manner as they think fit, and

 

(b)

recover the expenses reasonably incurred by them in doing so from the person in default,

 

 

and, without prejudice to the right of the authority to exercise those powers, the person is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 1 on the standard scale.

 

[F1 (3) This section has effect subject to the provisions [F2 the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990] relating to listed buildings, buildings subject to building preservation [F2 notices] and buildings in conservation areas.]

i will be off site for the next month or so. if you have any problems, feel free to report the post so a moderator can help you.

 

I am not a qualified or practicing lawyer.

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Have you got a copy of the letter where the council agreed that £25k was a "reasonable cost"?

i will be off site for the next month or so. if you have any problems, feel free to report the post so a moderator can help you.

 

I am not a qualified or practicing lawyer.

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Thaks Guys

 

You have muddied the waters even more :p (only joking)

 

I was demolishing the building under a section77 notice (The magistrates court allowed me 6 weeks to do this)

 

The council decided i was not working quickly enough so decided to take over the demolition in June 07

 

I wrote to them and told them i wished to appeal to the crown court as is my right under the Building Act 1984 They refused my request and took over the site (This brings up matters of article 6 of the human rights act inta alia)

 

Now as of yesterday the council were still working on the site Remembering they allowed me 6 weeks to complete the works this seems proof that there 6 weeks was unrealistic.

 

Having said all that after reading Aquades post i think i may be the claimant

 

I then read tomterms post and must admit i missed the word defendant in the Building Act 1984.

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