Improving Justice

Wales Campaigns

Proposal

A dedicated housing court or tribunal should be established for Wales to deliver swifter access to justice for landlords to legitimately repossess their property and tenants to hold their landlord to account. This is all the more important given the increasing statutory divergence resulting from devolution. The proposal already has the backing of a House of Commons Select Committee, Shelter Cymru, the Chartered Institute of Housing, and landlords on the ground. Senedd committees have also backed exploring this proposal.

Downloadable Resources

Read our bilingual short briefing

Improving Justice - Wales

Last updated: 11/03/2021 at 13:24 - 4.69 MB

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What we are calling for:

We want a dedicated housing court for Wales to deliver swifter access to justice for landlords to legitimately repossess their property and tenants to hold their landlord to account. Alternatively, the existing tribunal infrastructure should be tested as such a housing court. This is all the more important given the increasing statutory divergence resulting from devolution.

Supporters

  • House of Commons Housing Select Committee (2017-19)
  • Shelter Cymru
  • Chartered Institute of Housing
  • Tai Pawb
  • Community Housing Cymru
  • ARLA-Propertymark,
  • Two Senedd committees (have backed exploring this proposal)
  • Over 90% of landlords on the ground (2019 NRLA survey)

Benefits

  • Improved and speedier financial redress for both landlords and tenants, ensuring less money is wasted and investments lost
  • Less emotional upheaval for those wronged with a justice system that does not drag on and is staffed by those with expertise in housing law
  • More resources for the courts to deliver justice to victims of serious and violent crimes as the workload from housing disputes reduces

Case study: Scotland

In December 2017, the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland Housing and Property Chamber took over from the Sheriff Court in dealing with all private rented sector disputes including evictions, debt recovery actions, cases against landlords who failed to comply with deposit scheme regulations and letting agents who failed to comply with their code of practice. Whist the scrutiny of applications by the tribunal means landlords have to be more careful than ever to ensure their paperwork is in order, there are a number of benefits, with the process cheaper and less confrontational.

Campaign Updates

  • 11 February 2021 - NRLA meets with Shadow Housing Minister, Laura Jones MS (Con, South Wales East).
  • 27 January 2021 - NRLA meets with Senedd committee chair, John Griffiths MS (Lab, Newport East).
  • 19 January 2021 - NRLA meets with Hefin David MS (Lab, Caerphilly).
  • 10 December 2020 - NRLA release 2021 manifesto. Read more here.
  • 14 October 2020 - Senedd's Equality, Local Government, and Communities Committee back exploration of a housing court for Wales, following NRLA evidence. The Legislation, Justice, and Constitution Committee later made similar recommendations to the Welsh Government. Read more here.