In what is thought to be the first of its kind in Scotland, the City of Edinburgh Council has seized control of two ?party flats? from a private landlord after applying for Management Control Orders (MCO). What are the implications for landlords? ?This Order was brought in under the Antisocial Behaviour Etc (Scotland) Act 2004, which created a number of powers for police, local authorities and Registered Social Landlords to deal with antisocial behaviour. The City of Edinburgh Council may be the first to use Management Control Orders, despite this becoming law in 2005.
So what are?Management Control Orders and what implications do they have?for a private landlord?
- Part 7 ?of the 2004 Act allows the local authorities to serve an Antisocial Behaviour Notice on a landlord where it appears to the local authority?that the tenant, or the tenant?s visitors, have been engaging in?antisocial behaviour at the property.
- The?Notice will describe the antisocial behaviour that has taken place, and will require the landlord of the property to take action as specified in? the Notice by a certain period. This?action may be to serve notice on a tenant to bring the tenancy to an end, whilst still following the due legal process.
- Where?the local authority has served such a Notice and the landlord has not?taken the action required, the Local Authority can apply to the Sheriff to?make a Management Control Order.
- The?Order effectively transfers the rights and responsibilities of the? landlord under the relevant tenancy agreement, to the local authority for a specified period (of no more than 12 months).
- The Order will be served on both the landlord (and agent where appropriate) as well as the tenant of the property. This will effectively mean that the local?authority steps into the landlord?s shoes and any rent will be payable to?the local authority instead of the landlord.
The recent case in Edinburgh concerned flats that were rented to stag and hen parties. This resulted in a number of complaints about noise and antisocial behaviour from neighbouring residents. By taking control of the property out of the landlord?s hands, the intention would be that the ongoing occupation of the property can be closely monitored by the Local Authority and any further issues can be addressed swiftly and appropriately.
If you wish to discuss this further, please do not hesitate to contact a member of our LetLaw Team.