Housing Act 1996
1996 Chapter 52 - continued

 
  PART III
  LANDLORD AND TENANT
  CHAPTER I
  TENANTS' RIGHTS
 
Forfeiture
Restriction on termination of tenancy for failure to pay service charge.     81. - (1) A landlord may not, in relation to premises let as a dwelling, exercise a right of re-entry or forfeiture for failure to pay a service charge unless the amount of the service charge-
 
 
    (a) is agreed or admitted by the tenant, or
 
    (b) has been the subject of determination by a court or by an arbitral tribunal in proceedings pursuant to an arbitration agreement (within the meaning of Part I of the Arbitration Act 1996).
      (2) Where the amount is the subject of determination, the landlord may not exercise any such right of re-entry or forfeiture until after the end of the period of 14 days beginning with the day after that on which the decision of the court or arbitral tribunal is given.
 
      (3) For the purposes of this section the amount of a service charge shall be taken to be determined when the decision of the court or arbitral tribunal is given, notwithstanding the possibility of an appeal or other legal challenge to the decision.
 
      (4) The reference in subsection (1) to premises let as a dwelling does not include premises let on-
 
 
    (a) a tenancy to which Part II of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 applies (business tenancies),
 
    (b) a tenancy of an agricultural holding within the meaning of the Agricultural Holdings Act 1986 in relation to which that Act applies, or
 
    (c) a farm business tenancy within the meaning of the Agricultural Tenancies Act 1995.
      (5) In this section "service charge" means a service charge within the meaning of section 18(1) of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, other than one excluded from that section by section 27 of that Act (rent of dwelling registered and not entered as variable).
 
      (6) Nothing in this section affects the exercise of a right of re-entry or forfeiture on other grounds.
 
Notice under s.146 of the Law of Property Act 1925.     82. - (1) Nothing in section 81 (restriction on termination of tenancy for failure to pay service charge) affects the power of a landlord to serve a notice under section 146(1) of the Law of Property Act 1925 (restrictions on and relief against forfeiture: notice of breach of covenant or condition).
 
      (2) But such a notice in respect of premises let as a dwelling and failure to pay a service charge is ineffective unless it complies with the following requirements.
 
      (3) It must state that section 81 applies and set out the effect of subsection (1) of that section.
 
      The Secretary of State may by regulations prescribe a form of words to be used for that purpose.
 
      (4) The information or words required must be in characters not less conspicuous than those used in the notice-
 
 
    (a) to indicate that the tenancy may be forfeited, or
 
    (b) to specify the breach complained of,
  whichever is the more conspicuous.
      (5) In this section "premises let as a dwelling" and "service charge" have the same meaning as in section 81.
 
      (6) Regulations under this section-
 
 
    (a) shall be made by statutory instrument, and
 
    (b) may make different provision for different cases or classes of case including different areas.
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