Family Unlawfully Evicted Receives Damages of £22,00013 Jul 2023 | Tom McHale
Table of Contents
This matter involved an unlawful eviction claim brought by our clients against their private landlord (“the Landlord”). Our clients were a young couple with a two year old child who lived at the Landlord’s property (“the Property”) on an assured shorthold tenancy with a six month break clause. Our clients paid the first six months’ rent in advance, however on 20 January 2020 (six months into the tenancy) they received a s.21 “no fault eviction” notice. It gave the date after which our clients had to leave the Property as 16 March 2020. This presented an issue as our clients had booked a family holiday to Dubai and then to Bangladesh at this time and could not leave by the date of the notice. Our clients informed the Landlord of this accordingly and were given verbal assurance that they would definitely not have to leave the Property until April 2020 and potentially not until May 2020. While on holiday our clients tried to pay rent to the Landlord but experienced issues with the banking app they used while abroad and the payments did not go through. Both the Landlord and his letting agent were made aware of this fact by our clients.
Our clients returned to the Property in the evening of 16 March 2020 after an 18 hour flight to find that the locks on the Property had been changed and they were unable to enter. They had not been informed of this beforehand and had nowhere else to go. Our clients contacted both the Landlord and the letting agent but the Landlord did not answer and the letting agent told them to stop calling. Our clients then called the police and were advised to contact a locksmith to regain entry. On regaining entry, our clients saw that most of their belongings had been removed by the Landlord. Left with no choice, they then stayed the night in the flat. At around 7:45 AM the next morning, the Landlord and a family member came to the flat. They shouted at our clients to open the door and when they did not do so they kicked in the door, grabbed one of our clients by his shoulder and forcibly threw him out of the Property. The Landlord then proceeded to throw our client’s remaining belongings out of the flat and into the corridor. Our clients were left shaken and disturbed by this experience and had to stay with a family member thereafter in overcrowded conditions with their belongings missing. They were not rehoused by Camden Council until 10 August 2020.
Our clients then approached the firm for assistance and proceedings were issued against the Landlord who acted as a litigant in person. Efforts were made to settle the case prior to the hearing with a Part 36 offer being made but the Landlord refused this. The hearing took place on 10 June 2022 at the Clerkenwell and Shoreditch County Court. The Landlord did not appear at the hearing. During the hearing we played audio of calls to the police made by our client when the Landlord forcibly entered the Property. The Judge found that our client’s claim was successfully made out and they were awarded general damages; damages for trespass to the person; aggravated damages for both clients separately; exemplary damages (for the Landlord’s actions towards the clients and breach of the tenancy); special damages for lost possessions; and interest on damages as a result of damages being valued over the Part 36 offer made during the course of proceedings. The total damages figure comes to £22,005.76 and we were also awarded our legal costs for all work carried out on the case. The landlord then tried to set aside this order and appeared in person at a subsequent set aside hearing. He was unsuccessful in this regard and further costs were awarded against him.
Homelessness and Unlawful Eviction articlesVIEW ALL
Gatekept homeless teenager accommodated by local housing authority
Miss X, a 17 year old whose details are anonymised to protect her privacy, left her family home in March 2022 following...Read more
Homelessness case successfully settled for elderly disabled lady
Ms X, whose details are anonymised to protect her privacy, had been living in a privately rented one-bedroom flat for...Read more
Disrepair case against Landlord and Freeholder successfully settled
Osbornes Law represented a private tenant who lived with his young son. The property suffered from severe disrepair including leaking/...Read more
Client successfully rehoused following refusal by local authority
Osbornes Law represented a client who had been found intentionally homeless by his local authority. He was extremely vulnerable and...Read more
Client rehoused and £16,000 arrears cleared
Osbornes Law were instructed to assist a client to suspend a warrant for possession. The client had fallen into arrears...Read more
Victory for Homeless Victim
Mr X, whose details are anonymised to protect his privacy, fled his home country due to severe persecution from the...Read more
Successful homelessness judicial review case against Redbridge Council
This matter involved a claim in the High Court for judicial review against Redbridge Council for failure to comply with...Read more
Family Unlawfully Evicted Receives Damages of £22,000
This matter involved an unlawful eviction claim brought by our clients against their private landlord (“the Landlord”). Our clients were...Read more
Success in Court of Appeal in child disability...
The Court of Appeal has today handed judgment in the case of Harrington v Secretary of State for Work and...Read more
High Court finds Westminster Council’s Housing Scheme...
Westminster City Council’s housing allocation scheme found to be unlawful The High Court has today handed down judgment finding...Read more
Housing allocation case questions lawfulness of council’s...
Until February 2022, the social housing allocation scheme for the London Borough of Newham allowed people who lived outside the borough...Read more
Vulnerable child wrongly assessed to be an adult
Upper Tribunal finds a vulnerable child to be 17 years old despite two flawed local authority age assessments which led to...Read more
Young mother secures accommodation after illegal evictions during...
Here at Osbornes we have seen illegal evictions on the increase during this global pandemic. Osbornes have been advising many...Read more
Osbornes applying to Supreme Court in housing possession...
In the case of Gateway Housing Association –v- Begum (2) the Court of Appeal recently decided that a tenant must leave...Read more
Eviction from home of vulnerable man during lockdown...
Osbornes were instructed just before the lockdown to prevent the eviction of a vulnerable man with capacity issues. He had...Read more
Housing disrepair issues resolved after three years
Osbornes were instructed on behalf of a disabled tenant who had been decanted from her temporary accommodation for some three...Read more
Contact our Housing team today
For a free initial conversation call 020 7485 8811
Email us Send us an email and we’ll get back to you
Excellent work as usual Team Osbornes Law. Our service users have experienced some of the exceptional outcomes yourselves have achieved as outcomes for their housing and social issues.
Keep up the excellent work.
William Ford is the best housing and public law solicitor of his generation.
‘Osbornes are very approachable; in a time where many firms are unwilling to take on cases that do not look promising, they are prepared to look at difficult situations and find a way to assist their clients.
"Osbornes is one of the firms that I consistently recommend. Excellent service, and thorough and knowledgable lawyers."
‘From the very first moment, I was aware and grateful to have been put in touch with Osbornes. The expertise, advice, leaving no stone unturned right from the first minute until the very last, I would most certainly recommend every single time.’
"The associates have a thorough knowledge of the area of law, communicate effectively and are incredibly easy to work with."
"They are a firm that likes a challenge and are prepared to do the groundwork to develop cases, even if it means much preparation without remuneration."
"It is clear the firm put the interests of the client first at all times."
"There’s a real sense of team ethic. It’s clear that internal communication and case recording are strong because if a solicitor handling a case is away the person covering is fully up to speed, has the necessary documents available to them and nothing falls through the cracks."
"If a short deadline comes up on an urgent case, solicitors are active in collaborating to ensure it can be met."
"The practice is ‘undoubtedly one of the best in the business‘ and has a strong reputation for complex disrepair cases and possession claims against local authorities and housing associations."
Very strong team – incredibly knowledgable with good cross-over knowledge in mental capacity and community care. Thorough, dedicated and very professional. Clients will feel they are getting a gold standard service.
"Osbornes are an exceptional team. They have a wealth of housing experience and knowledge that is ‘top notch’. Clients are safe in their hands. As colleagues, they have a fantastic working relationship with each other and, feeding off of each other’s expert knowledge, their solicitors work to ensure that no stone is unturned."
"The team at Osbornes is inspired by its leader Will Ford, a truly first-rate, modern lawyer’s lawyer. The team have blossomed under his Will and are now packed with conscientious, dedicated and excellent lawyers who always give their clients 100%."
"Alex McMahon – thorough and committed. Very easy to work with."
"William Ford - A good technical lawyer with a strong commitment to his clients"
"A committed and well-organised team with a good knowledge of the law and who work hard to secure a good outcome for their clients"
"Osbornes has an impressive social housing team and the quality of their work that I have seen is very high. Will Ford is a very well-regarded figure in the housing law world and leads a team of high quality and committed lawyers."
"Osbornes provide an incredibly high-quality service to their clients. The firm treats its legal aid clients with the same respect and commitment as if they were important private clients, which is rare and admirable. Their housing solicitors are also highly skilled and knowledgable."
"He goes the extra mile for his clients."
"He is an excellent lawyer with exceptional attention to detail. He leaves no stone unturned in finding the right solution for his clients."
"This is an outstanding firm with great attention to detail. They work tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcome for their clients. They have excellent client care skills and are extremely organised."
“Osbornes has an impressive social housing team and the quality of their work that I have seen is very high. Will Ford is a very well-regarded figure in the housing law world and leads a team of high quality and committed lawyers. The existence of family and property law teams at the firm, amongst others, means that they are able to offer a holistic and expert approach to their clients.”
William Ford is "highly committed to his clients and leaves no stone unturned in seeking to assist them with their problems"
William Ford "is an astute litigator, and his breadth of knowledge allows him to take a holistic approach to clients’ situations."
"They are at the forefront of legal developments in the field of social housing and community care. They are committed to using their multidisciplinary expertise to achieve the best possible outcomes for clients."
"This a great team - the quality of their work is amazing and they are very professional"
"An exceptional outfit. They take on difficult cases, fight hard and win."
"William Ford frequently represents tenants in possession proceedings, homelessness appeals and disrepair claims... and is praised for his dynamic and hard-working approach."
"Osbornes team is noted for cross-practice expertise in areas such as housing and community care, which it brings to bear in disrepair, possession and homelessness cases involving vulnerable adults, individuals with language difficulties, the elderly and those with no recourse to public funds."
"The absolutely brilliant William Ford."
I was very happy with the excellent service from Osbornes in my disrepair case. They obtained a great result in my case and always pushed hard for my rights.
The social housing team is friendly, approachable and genuinely care about its clients.
A broad knowledge places the social housing department one step ahead of others when it comes to community care knowledge.
The social housing department always go the extra mile.
The social housing team has a strong track record in representing tenants in claims against local authorities and housing associations, with particular expertise in complex disrepair and possession cases.
The social housing department provides an excellent service and is able to react quickly in critical situations.
Thanks for all your support during this very difficult time for my family.
William Ford receives effusive praise for his dedication and commitment to social housing. Interviewees highlight his technical understanding and background in housing law, and describe him as highly impressive."
The team understand vulnerable clients and young people, and on the front line they are prompt and efficient.
Edward Taylor undertook my case from an almost unwinnable position. From our first meeting, Edward's enthusiasm was apparent. He was determined, diligent and most professional when dealing with my case, keeping me informed at every stage. I wholeheartedly thank Edward for his endeavours and would not hesitate in recommending him and Osbornes Solicitors to others.
Osbornes Solicitors give us the confidence and strength to continue and input the belief that the case would turn in our favour … What was most important was the transparency in communication that Osbornes provided.
Osbornes Solicitors are the pinnacle of professionalism and have gone beyond to assist with this case … I felt that I wasn't only dealing with just one dedicated solicitor but I had a good knowledgeable team behind me at all times.
I have been extremely impressed with the level of patience and guidance provided in the case … I would like to thank you for your sympathetic approach and understanding towards my mother’s case and I would strongly recommend Osbornes Solicitors to anybody.
'First-class lawyer' William Ford is 'completely dedicated to making a positive difference', and is acting in cases challenging the 'bedroom tax'.
Osbornes is commended for its 'rare level of commitment'.
William acts on possession, disrepair and homelessness cases, and has particular expertise in the protection of tenancy deposits under the Housing Act 2004