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Stuart J
Stuart J, Solicitor
Category: UK Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 22441
Experience:  PGD Law. 20 years legal profession, 6 as partner in High Street practice
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Hi we have been using a garage which is owned by a pub since

Customer Question

Hi we have been using a garage which is owned by a pub since 1989. The original owner said there would be no rent but we would need to pay all the utilites which we have been doing to date. Over these 20 years the pub has been sold three times and we have never been asked for rent or to be moved and have never met the subsequent owners. The pub is now being taken by the baliffs ,what rights (squatter) do we have to the garage.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: UK Property Law
Expert:  Stuart J replied 3 years ago.


Hello, I am Law Denning and I am a practising solicitor in a High
Street practice. I have been an expert on this website in UK law since 2008.
During that time, as you appreciate, I have answered thousands of questions
from satisfied users on a variety of subjects.

Because we are all in practice with clients and court and other
users, I might not always respond in
minutes
, particularly evenings and weekends. Please bear with me in that
case



It is my pleasure to try and assist you with this today. Please bear with me
while I gather some further information from you in order for me to be able to
advise you fully.





Unless I have all the facts that I need, my answer
would not be accurate.



Have they given notice to quit?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

the court has issued a warrant for possession . The eviction is due to take place on June 24th. Claim number 2BR01450 Warrant number B0000363. The garage is part of the Alexandra public house SE20 7JH. We have electricity and utility bills going back to 1989 but none of the 3 owners over the period of these years has asked for rent.

Expert:  Stuart J replied 3 years ago.






I assume that you were given
notice to quit but for some reason did not move out. That is because the court
has issued a warrant for possession. Before that, there must have been an order
for possession so this is obviously some way down the line. I am surprised that
the landlords solicitor has not already been chasing you for legal costs. My
suggestion would be to move out as soon as possible because you have already
incurred legal costs for which you are liable as the landlord has already
issued proceedings against you. If it proceeds to a hearing, there will be more
costs.



I will tell you the reasons.



In order to acquire any
rights by adverse possession you have two of occupied the property without
consent, not in secret, and without objection for over 10 years in the case of
registered land or 12 years with unregistered land. You admit that you were
allowed into the garage with consent and therefore adverse occupation does not
occur.



At best, you have what is
known as a "tenancy at will" which can be terminated on reasonable notice and
reasonable, after the period of time that you have been in occupation would
probably be three months.



If you have exclusive
occupation of the garage, tenancy will can actually be viewed upon by the court
as a lease and as such you are entitled to compensation for a catering provided
the landlord wants to use the property themselves or redevelop it and is not
acquired it in the last five years.



BUT, you have not paid rent
and therefore you cannot have a lease on any interpretation. Even the payment
of a nominal rent of say, 1 pound per year would have been enough to give you
some rights possibly



You have occupied on a mere
licence granted by the landlord from time to time.



This is not one that I would
be going to court on and, as I said earlier, I would have arranged to vacate
long before now.



I appreciate that this is not
the answer you wanted but there is no point in me misleading you



Does that
answer the question? Can I assist further?



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I am
offline shortly until later today and will pick this up then

Expert:  Stuart J replied 3 years ago.


This shows in my inbox as
waiting for attention from me. Can I assist further?

Please don't forget to positively rate my
answer service (even if it was not what you want to hear).

If you don't rate it positively, then the site keep your deposit and I get 0
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