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Scotland's Homeowner Housing Panel

Scotland's Homeowner Housing Panel

?Better Dispute Resolution in Housing: Consultation on the Introduction of a New Housing Panel for Scotland. A bit of a mouthful, but this is the title of the latest Government proposal for Scotland's Homeowner Housing Panel which was published in January 2013. The paper can be found by clicking here.

In very simple terms the government is inviting comment on its plan to change the way that housing disputes are resolved.

The consultation examines three principal options:

  • The expansion of mediation,?other forms of alternative dispute resolution and other early preventative action by tenants, landlords and relevant regulatory bodies involved in?resolving housing disputes;
  • The creation of a Housing Panel as a problem solving forum before a case reached court; and
  • The creation of a Housing Panel which could replace the courts as the main forum for resolving some?rented housing disputes.

In the consultation the government suggest that if a new Housing Panel is created as a replacement for the current courts, then the following types of cases may constitute its workload:

  • Cases raised by all social and private landlords seeking repossession of a rented house
  • Cases raised by all social and private?landlords pursuing a tenant for failure to meet their legal obligations under the tenancy agreement
  • Cases raised by tenants in relation to failure by social and private landlords to comply with their legal obligations in relation to the tenancy
  • Challenges by tenants to decisions by their?landlords where tenants currently have a right to appeal to the sheriff court against the landlord?s decision. This would cover, for example,appeals against the conversion of Scottish Secure Tenancies to Shor ?Scottish Secure Tenancies
  • Civil cases between local authorities and private landlords in relation to landlord registration. These would be the appeals against local authority decisions which currently go to the?sheriff court

The suggestions seem to be that the current Private Rented Housing Panel might be expanded to take on this workload. The consultation does recognise that some significant additional administrative support and case management would be needed to allow such an expansion. The PRHP currently deals with about 300 cases a year. Courts currently deal with about 14,000 cases in the above categories.

Responses to the consultation are sought before 9 April 2013.

If you would like any information on the new housing panel, please get in touch.

1 Tenancy Deposit Scheme

Written by : Super User