Housing Law Advice in Bristol
Our specialist team is headed by Frances Barratt, Derek McConnell and Benjamin Grant who between them have decade of experience in housing law.
Derek McConnell is described in Chambers as having a broad practice in housing law, and being "particularly noted for his expertise on mortgages and possession proceedings." He is the co-author of Defending Possession Proceedings, the unique reference work for those representing tenants and owner-occupiers.
Chambers notes that Frances Barratt is an experienced solicitor who "works tirelessly for her clients, many of whom are vulnerable. She is great to work with and really committed."
We represent tenants of Local Authorities, Housing Associations and private landlords in all aspects of Housing Law. We also represent owner occupiers, and people involved in housing-related litigation (not boundary disputes!). We recognise that having a secure and safe home is essential for everyone and a basic right of all who live in this country. Sadly, it is frequently the case that people find their homes threatened as a result of debt, benefit problems, or allegations of other breaches of tenancy, and they require specialist assistance and representation. We have been in the forefront of defending the rights of people who live in social housing, or who are at the mercy of unscrupulous or neglectful private landlords, and ensuring that those in the greatest housing need are represented. We also appreciate the problems experienced by those who are struggling to manage to pay their mortgage payments or secured loans.
We also give specialist advice and assistance to people who are homeless, and who are not receiving the service they need from the Local Authority homelessness services. This is a difficult and often very technical area of law.
We attend hearings on behalf of both tenants and homeowners to ensure, for example, that eviction for arrears is avoided.
We have a large caseload which always includes the following areas of work:
- Possession actions, including claims based on rent arrears, or other breaches of tenancy for example most commonly allegations of anti-social behaviour. This includes assistance and representation in applying for warrants for possession to be suspended, and assistance with Housing Benefit problems
- Homelessness cases both for families and for single people
- Cases involving anti-social behaviour eg injunctions and committal applications (not ASBOs)
- Harassment and illegal evictions
- Mortgage possession cases
- Private landlord disputes
Any housing problem is best and most easily resolved before proceedings are issued. It is therefore best to contact us as soon as difficulties arise. Legal Aid is available in some cases for those who are financially eligible.