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Plans for a new housing court have been revealed by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government.
The new designated housing court will aim to provide a single path of redress for both landlords and tenants to settle disputes that arise between them.
The government stated that whilst the majority of landlords are responsible owners, a number of tenants continue to live with the fear of being evicted at short notice or remain stuck in poor accommodation.
With housing disputes held in a number of different legal settings, it said the process can be confusing and ‘act as a deterrent to some of the most vulnerable seeking justice.’
The new housing court will aim to simplify the process of housing disputes, meaning that both landlords and tenants know they have somewhere to go to solve them.
Housing Secretary James Brokenshire said: ‘Everyone deserves to live in a safe and decent home, and this Government is bringing about real change in making renting more secure.’
He continued: ‘This is particularly important for families and vulnerable tenants who live with the fear of suddenly being forced to move, or fear eviction if they complain about problems with their home. It is also important for landlords who, in a minority of cases, struggle to get their property back when they have reason to do so.’
He concluded: ‘The proposals announced today will help ensure both tenants and landlords can access justice when they need it – creating a fair housing market that works for everyone.’
Other proposals, which are part of the £1 billion Reform Programme, include reducing the need for multiple hearings in different courts and transferring certain types of housing cases between the courts and tribunal to ensure cases are resolved quickly.
A formal call of evidence has been opened on the proposals, whereby people can respond by online survey, email, or post.