Tenant retains injunction preventing landlord from evicting him

A tenant has been granted an extension to an injunction preventing him from being evicted, although the judge made it clear that this did not prevent his landlord from issuing possession proceedings.

The tenant had obtained the injunction after the landlord attempted to remove his possessions from the property and lock him out.

There was also a dispute as to whether the agreement for occupation was an assured shorthold tenancy.

Further negotiations and legal action failed to resolve the dispute, so the landlord applied to have the injunction set aside. He said that he had not issued possession proceedings because he felt inhibited by the injunction.

The judge clarified the issue saying that the injunction was not intended to prevent possession proceedings. The difficulty was that it would have been wrong to remove the injunction because that would imply that the landlord was entitled to possession as the facts presently stood.

The court was not saying that the landlord was not entitled to possession, neither did the previous orders mean that the tenant was entitled to remain in the premises.

The best way forward was to vary the existing injunction. It would be continued but it would not be understood to prevent the landlord from issuing possession proceedings, and the tenant would resume paying £800 per calendar month in rent.

The rent payments were ordered without prejudice to the tenant's right to pursue damages from the landlord based on his obligations to him as a tenant. The judge also ordered the case to be transferred to the county court.

Please contact us if you would like more information about the issues raised in this article or any aspect of commercial property law.