§ Ground 1
§ The tenant or the proposed assignee is obliged to give up possession of the dwelling-house of which he is the secure tenant in pursuance of an order of the court, or will he so obliged at a date specified in such an order.
§ Ground 2
§ Proceedings have been begun for possession of the dwelling-house of which the tenant or the proposed assignee is the secure tenant on one or more of grounds 1 to 5A as set out in Part I of Schedule 4 to this Act or there has been served on the tenant or the proposed assignee a notice under section 33 of this Act which specifies one or more of those grounds and that notice is still in force.
§ Ground 3
§ The accommodation afforded by the dwelling-house is substantially more extensive that is reasonably required by the proposed assignee.
§ Ground 4
§ The extent of the accommodation afforded by the dwelling-house is not reasonably suitable to the needs of the proposed assignee and his family.
§ Ground 5
§ The dwelling-house forms part of, or is within the curtilage of, a building to which sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 1 of Part I of Schedule 1 to this Act applies and the dwelling-house was let to the tenant or to a predecessor in title of his in consequence of the tenant or predecessor being in the employment of the landlord or of a body specified in sub-paragraph (3) of that paragraph.
§ Ground 6
§ Ground 7
§ The dwelling-house has features which are substantially different from those of ordinary dwelling-houses and which are designed to make it suitable for occupation by a physically disabled person who requires accommodation of the kind provided by the dwelling-house and, if the assignment were made, there would no longer he such a person residing in the dwelling-house.
§ Ground 8
§ The landlord is a housing association or housing trust which lets dwelling-houses only for occupation (alone or with others) by persons whose circumstances (other than merely financial circumstances) make it especially difficult for them to satisfy their need for housing and, if the assignment were made, there would no longer be such a person residing in the dwelling-house.
§ Ground 9
§ The dwelling-house is one of a group of dwelling-houses which it is the practice of the landlord to let for occupation by persons with special needs and a social service or special facility is provided in close proximity to the group of dwelling-houses in order to assist persons with those special needs and, if the assignment were made, there would no longer be a person with those special needs residing in the dwelling-house.")1267
The noble Lord said: In dealing with this amendment, I propose to speak also to Amendments Nos. 44, 45, 47, 48, 49, 55, 56, 57, 58, 131, 137, 138 and 139.
Amendment No. 44: Page 24, line 29, at beginning insert ("In Part I of Schedule 4 to the 1980 Act (grounds on which court may order possession) after ground 5 there shall be inserted the following ground—
§ "Ground 5A
§ The tenancy was assigned to the tenant, or to a predecessor in title of his who is a member of his family and is residing in the dwelling-house, by an assignment made by virtue of section 37A of this Act and a premium was paid either in connection with that assignment or the assignment which the tenant or predecessor himself made by virtue of that section.
In this paragraph "premium" means any fine or other like sum and any other pecuniary consideration in addition to rent." (1A)")
Amendment No. 45: Page 24, line 29, leave out ("the 1980") and insert ("that")
Amendment No. 47: Page 24, line 32, leave out from ("in") to ("after") in line 33 and insert ("that Part of that Schedule")
Amendment No. 48: Page 24, line 36, leave out ("9A")
Amendment No. 49: Page 24, line 38, after ("of") insert ("Part I of")
Amendment No. 55: Page 25, line 38, at end insert ("or
(c) the assignment is made by virtue of section 37A below")
Amendment No. 56: Page 26, line 12, at end insert—
("Assignments by way of exchange.
37A.—(1) It is by virtue of this section a term of every menu by secure tenancy that the tenant may, with the written way of exchange, consent of the landlord, assign the tenancy to a person to whom this subsection applies; and this subsection applies to any person who is the tenant under a secure tenancy and has the written consent of his landlord to assign the tenancy either to the first mentioned tenant or to another person to whom this subsection applies.
(2) The consent required by virtue of this section is not to be withheld except on one or more of the grounds set out in Schedule 4A to this Act and, if withheld otherwise than on one of those grounds, shall be treated as given.
(3) The landlord shall not be entitled to rely on any of the grounds set out in Schedule 4A of this Act unless, within 42 days of the tenant's application for the consent, the landlord has served on the tenant a notice specifying that ground and giving particulars of it.
(4) Where any rent lawfully due from the tenant has not been paid or any obligation of the tenancy has been broken or not performed, the consent required by virtue of this section may be given subject to a condition requiring the tenant to pay the outstanding rent, remedy the breach or perform the obligation.
(5) Except as provided by subsection (4) above, a consent required by this section cannot be given subject to a condition, and any condition imposed otherwise than as so provided shall be disregarded." ")
§ Amendment No. 57: Page 26, line 13, leave out ("37A") and insert ("37B")
Amendment No. 58: Page 26, line 39, at end insert—
(" ( ) After Schedule 4 to the 1980 Act there shall be inserted, as Schedule 4A, the Schedule set out in Schedule (Schedule inserted after Schedule 4 to the 1980 Act) to this Act.")
Amendment No. 131: Page 83, line 20, at end insert—
(". In section 3(1) of the said Act of 1967 (meaning of "long tenancy") in paragraph (b) of the proviso after the word "assignment" there shall be inserted the words "otherwise than by virtue of section 37A of the Housing Act 1980 (assignments by way of exchange)".")
Amendment No. 137: Page 88, line 11, at end insert—
(". In subsection (1) of section 31 of that Act (meaning of successor) for the words from "but a tenant" onwards there shall be substituted the words "but subject to subsection (1A) below" and
after that subsection there shall be inserted the following subsection—
(1A) A tenant to whom the tenancy was assigned in pursuance of an order under section 24 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 is a successor only if the other party to the marriage was himself a successor; and a tenant to whom the tenancy was assigned by virtue of section 37A below is a successor only if he was a successor in relation to the tenancy which he himself assigned by virtue of that section.".")
§ Amendment No. 138: Page 88, line 12, at beginning insert ("(1) In subsection (2) of")
Amendment No. 139: Page 88, line 13, after ("procedure)") insert ("there shall be inserted after paragraph (a) the following paragraph—
(aa) whether any consent required by section 37A was withheld otherwise than on one or more of the grounds set out in Schedule 4A to this Act;".
§ (2) That section")
§ Last November, the Government announced their intention to give secure tenants the right to exchange their homes and the Department of the Environment issued a consultation letter setting out proposals. The Government's decision was taken in the light of the very patchy way in which landlords now allow their tenants to move homes. Some landlords are generous in their consideration of applications. They recognise the wider national sense behind rehousing people from outside their areas, despite their natural first duty towards their own ratepayers. These landlords recognise, too, the need to mitigate the personal anxiety and suffering caused by limiting tenants' capability to move. Others are, to put it frankly, unhelpful, sometimes to the point of obstructiveness. Some local authority landlords are parochially resistant to the idea of people moving to their areas from eleswhere.
§ I hope your Lordships all agree that the housing mobility of tenants who want to move is to be encouraged. A number of steps have been taken in recent years to promote mobility—that is, to encourage tenants to believe that it is possible to move and to provide means whereby such moves can be accomplished. I have a great deal of technical detail in front of me, but I suggest that at this hour and at this stage I do not go into it. I think that this is a very desirable part of our legislation and I propose to move it, although it goes without saying that I shall be glad to talk to it if your Lordships wish to press any particular points. I beg to move.
§ Baroness Birk
This is quite a mouthful and an earful to take in so late at night. I think I am right in saying that. As this was an amendment put in after the Notes on Clauses came out, we have not had any note on this schedule. Therefore, it has been a case of trying to go through everything in the Bill and not always quite keeping up with it. It would be extremely helpful, and we could have a more productive discussion on Report, since there are one or two points that I want to raise, if the Minister could let me—and anybody else who is concerned and who would like it as well—have an explanatory note. It is not that it is so difficult to follow; the grounds are simple to understand. We want to know the general thinking behind all that relates to mobility, which obviously we support, but there are some points which I shall have to take up with the Minister. It would also save time if at Report we had a better idea of what we are discussing.
§ Lord Bellwin
I shall be very glad to write as detailed an explanatory note as I can for the noble Baroness and for anybody else who wishes to have it. I could then deal with any queries which the noble Baroness may have, after which she can decide what she wishes to do about it at Report.
§ On Question, amendment agreed to.
§ Lord Denham
We have reached the point at which we could profitably adjourn the Committee stage. Although our progress earlier was not quite so fast as some of us would have wished, I must thank the Committee for the expeditiousness with which they have dealt with the more recent amendments.
I beg to move that the House do now resume.
§ Moved accordingly, and, on Question, Motion agreed to.
§ House resumed.
§ House adjourned at three minutes before eleven o'clock.