News and Events

Eviction prevented after possession claim was struck out

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Our head of housing ‘Grace Bovill’ was successful in representing a long standing Brixton tenant from becoming homeless by making representations to the court that the Landlord had restored proceedings without permission to do so. The court agreed that the landlord could not restore the proceedings in the manner that they had and therefore dismissed the claim.

This case has been a long standing matter that started in 2015, when Ms Betiel Mahari’s home was demolished by the ‘Guinness Partnership’ who owned the property. Not only did this mean that she had to relocate from her home she had lived in for over 10 years, her weekly rent was increased from £109 per week to £265 per week for a 2 bedroom flat in a new area.

This single mother of two had no choice and had to take the property on offer. If she did not it would have been considered that she had intentionally made her family homeless. However the matter got worse as in moving to a new area she could no longer keep her full time job in Brixton, and had to seek part time work.

Whilst the Department of Work and Pensions worked out if she was entitled to benefits to assist her in paying the increased rent, they suspended her payments for three months. As a result, Ms Mahari fell into arrears with her rent. Ms Mahari felt strongly about this and promoted her story in the local press and online with a campaign being promoted as #campaignforbeti

Wainwright & Cummins were able to assist Ms Mahari and represent her at court. As a result of our representation, the Guinness Partnership Trusts’ claim was dismissed and they were ordered to pay Ms Mahari’s costs. This was an excellent outcome for Ms Mahari who was very concerned that she was going to lose her home.

However Ms Betiel Mahari is not alone, as many other tenants are facing eviction from their home, due to a number of various issues including un-affordability, bedroom tax, benefits issues and regeneration of estates.

If you find yourself or someone you know in this type of situation, please contact our housing department on: 02077379335 or contact us via email