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Wondering about Wales?

july legalAs of 1 April 2016, the Leasehold Advisory Service has been providing legal help to park home owners, site owners and local authorities concerning park home law in Wales. LEASE’s Antony Tregenna examines some of the main features of the Mobile Homes (Wales) Act 2013 (‘the Act’) and the increased protection for home owners

So, when did the Mobile Homes (Wales) Act 2013 come into effect? All sections of the Act came into force on 1 October 2014 and apply to all residential parks in Wales.

Licensing
A site licence is required if the owner is using land as a regulated site. Operating without a licence is an offence and an unlimited fine may be imposed by a court.

Regulated sites
The licensing provisions apply to regulated sites.  A regulated site  must have at least one mobile home stationed on it for the purposes of human habitation, apart from holiday sites. Schedule 1 of “the Act” also lists the types of site that are not regulated. These include sites owned by the local authority.

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Protection against harassment under the Mobile Homes Act

junelegalWe explore the delicate issue of park home residents experiencing harassment on their site. The Leasehold Advisory Service’s specialist park home legal advisors Manjit Rai and Antony Tregenna explain more

The term ‘harassment’ is often bandied about but what’s the correct legal definition, as far as park home residents are concerned? Residents of park home sites are provided with protection against harassment by Section 3 of the Caravan Sites Act 1968 (the 1968 Act) as amended by Section 210 of the Housing Act 2004 and Section 12 of the Mobile Homes Act 2013 (the 2013 Act). This applies to all occupiers of park homes who:
●    Live on a protected site.
●    Have a residential contract with the site owner.

Harassment is defined as an action that interferes, or is likely to interfere with, the peace and comfort of the occupier, or the persistent withdrawal of services or facilities reasonably required for the occupation of a park home. These actions must be carried out with the knowledge that they are likely to cause the occupier to abandon the park home, remove it from the site, or to refrain from exercising any right. We have outlined some examples of what constitutes harassment in this article.

Examples of harassment
●    Forcing occupier to sign an agreement to sign away their legal rights.
●    Removing or restricting essential services such as disconnecting the electricity.
●    Entering the home without the
    occupier’s consent.

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Inheriting and gifting a park home

may legalAimee Hutchinson, a solicitor at Blacks Solicitors LLP, and Antony Tregenna, a legal advisor at The Leasehold Advisory Service, explain the key differences between inheriting and gifting a park home

It is common for site owners, park home owners and those who may be entrusted with the administration of an estate after a park home owner has passed away, to be unaware of the rules that apply in relation to who can rightfully inherit a Written Statement and in turn the right to reside in a residential park home. In addition there also tends to be confusion surrounding the circumstances where a resident can gift their park home.

This article looks at the differences between inheriting and gifting a park home and considers common examples.   

Inheritance of a Written Statement
Inheritance depends upon who was living with the park home owner at the time of death. Section 3 of the Mobile Homes Act 1983 (“the Act”) sets out the relatives who may inherit the Written Statement, but inheritance  is subject to the home being occupied by the park home owner (prior to their death) as their main or only residence.

It will be necessary to look at a number of scenarios to establish these inheritance rights.

By way of example, James and Joan are married and live in a park home. James has died and left the park home to Joan in his Will.

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The Leasehold Advisory Service – Training and Outreach events

April legalWe find out more about the kind of training programmes LEASE offers

The Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE) provides information and advice for owners of park homes, site owners, local authority officers or anyone else with a question about park homes law.

On 26 May 2013, the Government introduced ‘the Mobile Homes Act 2013’ which was introduced to give greater protection to occupiers of residential mobile homes.

Since the introduction of the Mobile Homes Act 2013 and supporting legislation, LEASE has established several links within the park homes industry. Last year LEASE attended over 70 events for local groups – park home residents, residents’ associations, surgeries, local authority events and site owner events.

LEASE continue to reach out to more individuals, professionals and organisations who are interested in park homes law to give people a good understanding about what the changes mean for them,  their parks and organisations.

 

 

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An introduction to buying and selling residential park homes

march legalIn this article we will focus on the legal considerations when a park site owner sells a mobile home under the Mobile Homes Act (as amended) and the Consumer Rights Act 2015. Solicitor Kirstie Apps, of Stephens Scown, and Ibraheem Dulmeer, from the Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE) explain

While the sale of residential park homes by an occupier/park home resident is regulated by the Mobile Homes (Selling and Gifting) Regulations 2013, it is interesting to note that there are no regulations in place for the sale of mobile homes by the site owner.  

The Mobile Homes Act does require, however, that a written statement is given to a proposed occupier:

‘…not less than 28 days before the date of which any agreement for the sale of the mobile home to the proposed occupier is made’.
 
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QRAs: practice, procedure and formation

feb legalIn 2006 the law relating to residential parks changed and it became possible to establish a Qualifying Residents’ Association (QRA). In this article, Nick Dyson, partner at Blacks Solicitors LLP and head of the Holiday and Home Parks Team, with the assistance of Ibraheem Dulmeer, Legal Advisor at LEASE, addresses the frequently asked questions in relation to QRAs

A QRA is best described as a group of residents who work together to represent the interests of residents on a park. A QRA can operate in a number of ways including consulting with the park owner about issues which are affecting the residents on the park and arranging social activities.
 
How do you form a QRA?
Practically speaking it would be best to make enquiries with fellow residents to see if there is any interest in establishing a QRA. Perhaps arrange a meeting and notify all home owners of the date and time so a discussion can be held about making the necessary arrangements to form a QRA.
It will then be important to see if you can meet the following conditions which are required to establish a QRA:

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