News & Insights

The Determination of the First-Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber – Residential Property) (the “FTT”)

The FTT is a part of the court system in the UK but is independent of the government. There are currently five regionally based tribunal offices. Each tribunal usually consists of 3 members who hear your case including a chairman (normally a solicitor), a surveyor and a layperson.
You can apply to the FTT in respect of (but not limited to) the following matters:

  •  Leasehold disputes i.e. rent, service charge, management, breach of lease covenants etc.
  •      Leasehold enfranchisement i.e. if you want to extend your lease or buy the freehold.
  •  Disputes about licences for houses in multiple occupation.

 To make an application, you need to fill out the correct form and send it to your regional office. The FTT will tell you if they will consider your case. They may also request additional supporting evidence and issue directions, which require the parties to carry out actions (such as exchanging witness statements) by a certain date. The FTT can strike out a case if parties fail to comply with directions.
The FTT can make a decision based on your application alone or they may require you to attend an oral hearing. During a hearing, the parties are given the opportunity to present their case and can be asked questions. A solicitor, surveyor, family member or friend can represent you at the hearing.
In terms of costs, there may be a fee of up to £630 payable with your application. The FTT also has the power to award unlimited costs if they consider that a party has acted unreasonably in bringing, defending or conducing proceedings (although previous cases suggest that this is rarely enforced).
Foskett Marr Gadsby & Head LLP regularly advise clients on matters taking place in the FTT. Please contact Richard Gordon in the Litigation Team on 01992 578 642 for further information.