We previously highlighted property owners’ statutory duty to notify the local authority on a change of the rateable occupier and the risk of a charge being levied on the property for failure to comply. The 14 day notification period is tight.

Landlords are likely to be live to this obligation in situations where there is an obvious change in the rateable occupier such as on assignment, sub-letting and surrender. However, landlords should be equally quick to react any time possession of the property is taken back. For example, each of the following actions triggers the statutory notification requirement:

  • The natural expiry of a lease
  • Termination of a lease following the exercise by a tenant of a break option
  • Forfeiture
  • Landlord action following the return of keys by a tenant indicating acceptance by the landlord of the surrender of a tenancy