Tenant Claiming Personal Injury

by Readers Question

5:45 AM, 16th May 2015
About 4 years ago

Tenant Claiming Personal Injury

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Tenant Claiming Personal Injury

I am a landlord with honestly the worst tenant ever (This was my first and last rent).

I have now received a letter from the tenant claiming he has fallen down the stairs and I have received a letter confirming his solicitors (Express Solicitors) are now reviewing the case. Basically he has fallen down the stairs and is trying to claim? We have proof that there is nothing wrong with the stairs or dilapidations. I guess there is no case?

I have now improved my insurance to include this.

What do you think (This is the same tenant in a previous post who has not paid his rent since Jan 2015)

Paddy



Comments

Neil Patterson

5:54 AM, 16th May 2015
About 4 years ago

Hi Paddy,

"(Express Solicitors) are now reviewing the case"

This sounds more like a hopeful threat than any concrete action to me, but please do be careful and have your inventory and maintenance proofs to hand just in case you are forced to use them. Please let us know if it is taken any further after being "reviewed".

Can I also take this opportunity to confirm that every Landlord needs Landlords insurance and this is one of the many reasons why. You would be amazed how many Landlords don't have it and are breaking something as fundamental as their mortgage deed. It is not expensive in the grand scheme.

Please get insurance now if you haven't already and the good news is we guarantee to be the cheapest like for like insurance for Property118 readers see >> http://www.property118.com/landlords-insurance-landlords-buying-group-2/

Rob Crawford

7:48 AM, 18th May 2015
About 4 years ago

Claiming negligence will be very difficult for the tenant to do unless the stairs are obviously defective and you have not addressed requests to fix the fault. If he is the worse tenant ever I assume that you have already served him notice to leave. If not why not?

Adrian Jones

11:02 AM, 18th May 2015
About 4 years ago

What, exactly, did the tenant and Express Solicitors say in their letters?

J Days

12:21 PM, 18th May 2015
About 4 years ago

I have had tenants threatening to sue for all manner. They are fee loaders and nothing will come of this. They are looking for something for nothing.

GET RID of them NOW

Andrew Holmes

12:45 PM, 18th May 2015
About 4 years ago

If he is suing for injuries then you should be able to get access to the hospital report that the injuries were treated at.

If there is no injuries then there will be no real case, i am assuming the solicitors he is employing is a no win no fee set up.

If there is nothing wrong with the stairs then it is the tenants own fault, if a person makes a malicious/fraudulent claim against someone this is unlawful and in return they could find themselves being countered sued for expenses. Even though your present insurance will probably not intervene due to you up dating your policy after this scenario developed, i have always found legal departments very helpful and willing to offer free advice, worth a try.

I am guessing the tenant is looking to have the rent debt they owe you wiped off. You have done the right thing up dating your insurance to include legals, they are worth their weight in gold but fully check any future tenants as specified by the insurance group or your legals may be limited in effectiveness.

Do not be too dis heartened Paddy, i think the majority of landlords get a bad tenant at sometime or other. Have you sectioned 21 the tenant or made any moves to regain your property back ? Just wondering if this is why this latest tactic has been deployed.

Dr Rosalind Beck

13:56 PM, 18th May 2015
About 4 years ago

We get these empty threats quite regularly. Last year we had a neighbour of a tenant saying he had gone into her garden to help with the gardening and slipped on a step. He said he was taking legal advice. We said we hadn't invited him into the garden; the tenant had, so he could sue her. We also told her she was silly to give him our number and encourage him in his claim as it would now be against her! We then heard nothing more about it.
I think the only thing I'd worry about is if there was no handrail on the staircase, as that could be considered dangerous. Otherwise, if there is no record of the tenant having reported it and you having done nothing, I personally wouldn't worry about this one. But I'm not a legal expert.

Steve From Leicester

15:24 PM, 18th May 2015
About 4 years ago

When No win no fee solicitors take cases like this on they write very aggressive letters demanding to know who the insurers are and stating that all sorts of rules and regs have been broken by the landlord. What they want is a quick result.

If your insurer won't take it on, then so long as you're absolutely confident its a spurious claim treat it as a game. Write detailed replies back to the solicitors answering every point they raise, presenting evidence to support your comments (e.g. photos showing the stairwell is well lit etc). Don't be intimidated by threats that they'll start immediate court proceedings unless you cave in and give them what they want.

Experience tells me that it usually takes five or six well-written replies before they decide its too much bother and drop the case.

Ross McColl

16:13 PM, 18th May 2015
About 4 years ago

I've had this before. Just ignore them. Highly likely they are no win no fee, so are unlikely to take it to court. If worst comes to worst counter claim for arrears, which will offset and evict them with a section 21.

Mark Weedon

17:18 PM, 18th May 2015
About 4 years ago

Hi Paddy

Provided your policy is arranged to cover a let property, your policy should provide Public Liability or Property Owners Liability. If so, then you should be covered and the insurers will pay the costs of defending you.

Paddy Power

20:09 PM, 18th May 2015
About 4 years ago

Hi All,
Thanks for your comments. As you can imagine with this tenant I have issued a section 8 and 21 already and waiting to evict. He has no case I hope because he has no evidence and also he has never told me of any issues.
He is just playing silly games. I am going to reply to the Solicitors with provide me the following:
1. Full details of what losses your client is claiming for and why.
2. Why you or your client believe I have any liability whatsoever in this matter.
3. Evidence of any losses incurred.
4. Evidence that clearly shows I have any liability for these losses?

That should keep them busy and forget the case. Again thanks all for your advice. We have insurance but I personally want to deal with it in case it has an impact on other court cases etc.

Thanks again

Paddy

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