Happy common commencement day everyone!
It comes but twice a year, but commencement day is a real highlight of the legislative calendar when fledgling new laws come into force and everyone scrambles around to make sure that they aren’t inadvertently committing any brand new crimes.
In that respect 2018 is a relatively quiet year for ‘new laws’ but this 6 April we have a few of note, for which the Government has provided ‘handy’ guidance:
From 6 April 2018 those landlords and agents convicted of certain crimes may be banned from continuing to operate in the PRS.
Database of rogue landlords and letting agents:
For those not guilty of sufficient offences to warrant a banning order a ‘rogues database’ is now live. This will not be publically available, but will allow enforcement agencies to monitor – potentially facilitating and informing future prosecutions.
Housing & Planning Civil Penalties:
As an alternative to prosecution local authorities may now opt to impose civil penalties in relation to certain offences, or failure to comply with some notices.
Extension of Rent Repayment Orders:
Finally rent repayment orders (RROs), long associated with licensing offences have been extended to cover illegal eviction, the breaching of a banning order and certain over serious offences.