Snow delayed form 6A?

by Readers Question

10:03 AM, 8th March 2018
About 7 months ago

Snow delayed form 6A?

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Snow delayed form 6A?

I have sent a form 6A to my Tenants dated the 28 Feb with the notice expiring the 1st May.

However, the tenant did not receive the notice until the 5 March and is complaining that she will have less than the 2 months notice as per contract.

What can I do?

I have two proofs of 1st class postage dated 28 Feb etc. What is the definition of 2 months notice as per 2015 deregulation?

The tenancy is out of its fixed term period.

Many thanks

Alex



Comments

AA

10:10 AM, 8th March 2018
About 7 months ago

Why would a week make a difference ? Go with the tenants date, if things go pear shaped it makes you look like a caring accommodating individual.

Neil Patterson

10:14 AM, 8th March 2018
About 7 months ago

Hi Alex,

It depends on if the tenant is going to make it an issue as the form 6A clearly states "You are entitled to at least two months’ notice before being required to give up possession of the property."

You May have to reissue notice, but I have not run across this exact scenario before.

Ian Narbeth

11:02 AM, 8th March 2018
About 7 months ago

Does your tenancy have any deeming provisions. In many contracts notices are deemed received on the next or the second working day after posting regardless of when they are actually received. Absent a deeming provision that it is deemed received on the next working day you are out of time and your notice will be invalid. Even if deemed served on 1st March I'd need to check that precisely two months was OK.
If you specified 1st May the notice will NOT operate as 5th May, even if the tenant agrees to go on 5th May. You should now serve a second valid notice. Otherwise, if the tenant does not move out on 5th May you will have to serve a two month notice at that time.

Ken Smith

23:10 PM, 8th March 2018
About 7 months ago

A few better alternatives to use as a combination

1. Hand deliver it. Video record it being posted through the door.
2. Send it next day GUARANTEED. £5
3. Email it.
4. Send it much earlier anyway.
5. Tell them by phone too and record the conversation.

I dont see how this simple process can become a problem unless you let it happen - by presumably using risky first class mail.

Even if they get it on time by first class they can tell you it came late anyway without a signature. You say you have proof of posting. The fact it was received is proof of posting enough. What you should have paid for was next day special delivery of about £5.

David Price

7:52 AM, 9th March 2018
About 7 months ago

I believe that the courts accept that a document sent by first class post is deemed delivered after two working days. Since you have proof of posting you should be okay but I would play safe and reissue giving two months and at least a week notice. There is no virtue in sending by any service which requires a signature as the tenant may refuse to sign.

PATRICIA SIMPSON

8:38 AM, 9th March 2018
About 7 months ago

Following a court decision notice does not have to be issued on the anniversary of the date moving in.

Issue new notice immediately to give tenants two months notice.

You will have only lost a couple of weeks this way .

Mike

9:18 AM, 9th March 2018
About 7 months ago

Imagine a date by when a tenant was suppose to move out and it had snowed over deep everywhere! I doubt it if the landlord would have been able to make it to receive the property keys either. Snow does bring things to a grind. re-issue a new notice, don't just verbally agree to give her extra few days instead.

Luke P

9:32 AM, 9th March 2018
About 7 months ago

It doesn't actually matter if the tenant *ever* received the notice...if you have a proof of posting receipt and it was sent first class, it WILL BE DEEMED SERVED two days after it was sent. Carry on as you were.

terry sullivan

9:34 AM, 9th March 2018
About 7 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Luke P at 09/03/2018 - 09:32
thats my understanding of the law too

Ian Narbeth

15:29 PM, 9th March 2018
About 7 months ago

Reply to the comment left by David Price at 09/03/2018 - 07:52David, you write:
"Since you have proof of posting you should be okay but I would play safe and reissue giving two months and at least a week notice." Alex is not OK because 2 working days after 28 February is 2nd March which is less than two months before 1st May.
Ken Smith, unless the tenancy allows service by email, it will not usually be valid. Hand delivery is fine. Phoning to give notice or texting the notice has no legal effect. Videoing yourself hand delivering the letter is not proof unless the court is satisfied the time clock on the video was correct which will be uneconomic to prove.
In the absence of contractual or statutory provisions deeming receipt, the common law rule is that service of a notice takes effect on receipt.
Luke P, I don't think your statement is correct and I am not aware of a general deeming provision. Can you give us chapter and verse? My understanding is that where a statute authorises a notice to be served by post and contains no express provision deeming receipt, section 7 of the Interpretation Act 1978 will apply. Section 7 provides that service is deemed to be effected by properly addressing, pre-paying and posting a letter containing the document, and is deemed to have been effected at the time at which the letter would be delivered in the ordinary course of post, unless the contrary is proved.
The key words are "unless the contrary is proved". In this case the tenant can give evidence that the notice was not received until the 5th and will be readily believed because of the bad weather.
Service of notices is tricky to get right. For example if the property is a flat in a block with a common entrance hall, there can be problems proving that the notice got to the tenant's property and wasn't for example picked up by another tenant or eaten by his dog.
If the lease has deeming provisions that may help but the safe course is for Alex to have a fresh notice hand delivered and to allow a few extra days beyond the two months

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