Section one hundred and ninety-six of the Law of Property Act, 1925, shall apply to the service of notices for the purposes of this Act, and be deemed to have applied to the service of notices for the purposes of section three thereof.—[The Solicitor-General.]
§ Brought up, and read the First time.
§ The Solicitor-General
I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."
This brings into one particular Clause all references to service of notices. In other parts of the Bill we have left out—and the Committee have agreed to our so doing—other references to service of notices in order that this new Clause may cover them all.
§ Question put, and agreed to.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Clause be added to the Bill."—[The Solicitor-General.]
§ Mr. Hay
I beg to move as an Amendment to the proposed new Clause, in line 1 to leave out from beginning, to "shall," and to insert:section twenty-three of the Landlord and Tenant Act, 1927.The new Clause provides that the provisions of Section 196 of the Law of Property Act, 1925, shall apply to the service of notices. As many hon. Members know, that is a very customary provision in matters of this kind. It is an omnibus section introduced into the Law of Property Act and refers to service of notices and such like things. My point is—and I am certain that the Solicitor-General has looked at this matter—that Section 23 of the Landlord and Tenant Act, 1927, is a similar sort of section. It is a little shorter and in my view it is far more concise and more appropriate to the sort of situation which this Bill is intended to cover. I shall not weary the Committee—we are all anxious to make progress—by reading out the two contrasting sections of these two Acts. I have no doubt that hon. Members interested in this Amendment looked at them for themselves. I move my Amendment formally by saying that I hope the 1524 right hon. and learned Gentleman will agree that Section 23 of the Landlord and Tenant Act, 1927, is far more appropriate for the sort of thing that this Bill is intended to cover.
§ The Solicitor-General
I am most anxious not to prolong the proceedings, but I am bound to say that it was my hope that when the hon. Member for Henley (Mr. Hay) moved his Amendment that he would indicate in argument why he thought the provisions of the 1927 Act were preferable to the provisions of Section 196 of the Law of Property Act. In the view that we have formed, there is not very much to choose between the two. I have a perfectly open mind on it, and would have liked to hear more in argument as to why we should prefer the form of the 1927 Act to the form of the 1925 Act. If the hon. Gentleman would be so kind, either now or at some later stage, to indicate the reasons which motivated him in putting down this Amendment in favour of Section 23 it would help, but at the moment we are taking Section 196. Although the two sections are similar they are not, in effect, quite the same, and we think that the more appropriate is the one which is in the Bill. I have a very open mind about the matter.
§ Mr. Hay
I did not want to give a long explanation to the Committee and I thought that the right hon. and learned Gentleman would give my point consideration. I do not propose even now to go in any great detail into the difference between the two, but I ask the right hon. and learned Gentleman between now and the Report stage to look at those provisions, and particularly at subsections (2), (3) and (6) of Section 196 of the Law and Property Act, 1925. In those subsections are to be found the conditions which I consider entirely inappropriate for this sort of Bill.
Section 23 of the 1927 Act is far shorter, more concise and is the one which is normally used and resorted to by those who act for, and give advice to, landlords and tenants in matters similar to those covered by this Bill. Lawyers, solicitors and estate agents usually use in legal documents Section 27 of the 1927 Act. I shall not delay the Committee at this stage. I have indicated shortly what my points are and perhaps I might 1525 write to the right hon. and learned Gentleman to make the point clear. I beg to ask leave to withdraw the Amendment.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ Question put and agreed to.
§ Clause added to the Bill.