Emotive and meaningless words ‘no fault’ referring to s.21 noticesMake Text Bigger
Last year, Property118 contributor Dr Ros Beck wrote a critique, under the banner of The Landlords Union, of a Richard Bilton/BBC Panorama programme in which he was calling for the removal of S.21 altogether, that questioned and strongly criticised the use of the term ‘no fault’ when describing S.21 Notices. Click here to read the article.
Obviously this is very emotive language and something that is rarely, if ever, true because we all know landlords do not evict tenants for no reason (even if the reason is not officially recorded anywhere).
As pointed out by ‘Old Mrs Landlord’ on page 8 of the comments in this recent thread, Click here, the current Section 21 Notice known as Form 6a (Click here to download) includes the words ‘no fault’ on the form itself and even explains that it is this particular form a landlord should use when issuing a ‘no fault’ Notice.
This prompted me to do a bit of research on Form 6a and to see if this wording was a new addition or not. I happen to have the very first version of Form 6a saved before, even, the DCLG’s (as it was then) logo was added to the top. It used to come as a 6-page pack that included the full Statutory Instrument wording in the first three pages, then the two page Notice itself, followed by one page of explanatory notes.
The first few pages that make up the official Statutory Instrument wording -the proper ‘grown-up’ Parliamentary/legal stuff- makes no mention of ‘no fault’ and nor should it. Suggestion or emotion has no place in legislation, here or anywhere else. So good news there.
However, both the Notice (which is in different typeface and very likely written by a totally different department) and the explanatory notes have managed to have the words ‘no fault’ slipped into them numerous times. This is nothing short of infiltration!
In the versions since the original, the Statutory Instrument wording has been dropped and the explanatory notes are now a separately downloadable document, but as discovered by Old Mrs Landlord, the no fault wording remains.
Narratives and politics change all of the time, but to have these meaningless words added to legal documents is outrageous.
Has anyone else noticed this and what do the NLA/RLA propose to do about this type of Government-level misuse of power? I would urge members of those organisations to contact them for comment and their proposals to stamp out abuse such as we clearly have here.
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