The evictions court system is creaking under the pressure of its existing workload and will face collapse unless the government injects significant funds ahead of its Section 21 ban, it has been claimed.
Eviction law firm Landlord Action says it has dealt with numerous cases where court delays and administrative errors mean evictions are taking longer than ever, pushing landlords into further debt.
Its spokesperson Paul Shamplina says the situation is the worst he has seen during his 28 years working in the sector and has warned that the court system, which has faced closures and cost-cutting in recent years, will see its workload double after Section 8 evictions become the only tool available to landlords.
One of the key reasons cases are delayed is judges not being available for hearings, which are then cancelled and a new date set weeks or months ahead.
One eviction Shamplina (left) is dealing with that hinges on whether a ‘How to Rent Guide’ had been given to the tenant, starting on 27th June last year, has yet to be heard after two judges in succession became unavailable and administrative errors led to five court dates all of which have been pushed forward.
“We are experiencing cases like this time and time again,” says Shamplina.
“It’s not only causing extra work for us at Landlord Action, meaning we now have a full-time member of staff whose main responsibility is chasing courts for updates on possession orders, Notice of Issues and bailiff appointments, it is also causing extreme stress for the landlords who are already facing financial hardship as a result of rent arrears.”