Six months with NWL Legal

by Claire Reeves, Legal Assistant

As I come to the end of six months working within the NWL Legal Team as a Legal Assistant, I have taken time to reflect on my experiences so far.

My primary responsibility within the team is to handle all new and existing Housing Disrepair claims received by North West Leicestershire District Council.

During the past six months I have received training on Housing Disrepair and legal costs. In addition, I have had the chance to actively participate in the weekly meetings with the housing department where I have been able to see in practice how we deal with different types of claims and how we determine liability. Attendance at these meetings has also provided me with the opportunity to begin to build crucial relationships with the Council’s housing and repairs teams.

Now that I am six months into my role, I have had the opportunity to deal with a variety of disrepair claims, all at various stages of the process and have had successes in settling several disrepair claims since starting in my role which has been very rewarding. I have found this not only to be rewarding because it settles the matter for the Council but because it also means that the homes and hopefully the lives of the tenant’s living within the properties will be improved as a result of repairs being carried out.

I feel that the training and support that I have received so far within the NWL Legal team and the wider Council has been excellent and has set me up perfectly to embark on my new role, giving me the confidence to manage a varied caseload and the chance to build on existing knowledge and skills. I have learned a great deal in this role, just within the past six months and look forward to building on this further as I continue to develop in the role.

As a working mum to a young daughter, I have found that the flexible working arrangements offered by NWL Legal and the Council have made it easy to strike a comfortable balance between my family and working life – something which is very important to me and is not always easy to find!

All in all, the experience that I have had so far working within the NWL Legal team has been overwhelmingly positive and I look forward to developing further within my role over the months and hopefully years to come.

Charging Orders and Orders for Sale

Kerrie Culverwell, Senior Property Solicitor

by Kerrie Culverwell, Senior Property Solicitor

A Charging Order can be sought to secure a charge in favour of a Creditor over the Debtor’s property. This method is most effective where there is substantial equity in the land or property and where the Debtor is the sole owner. This is because a charging order takes effect subject to other charges, such as mortgages on the property.

An Order for Sale is a method of enforcing a Charging Order. If the court grants an Order for Sale the property can be sold by the Creditor who is then able to recover their debt from the sale proceeds. When making the Order the court will determine what value the property should be sold for and the method by which the property should be sold.

The Steps involved are briefly summarised as follows:-

  1. Evidence Gathering – the Creditor must take all reasonable steps to obtain the evidence to be submitted with the claim form. Practice Direction 73.4.3 sets out the evidence required.
  2. Make the Application – Using a Part 8 claim form and usually at the court that made the Charging Order. The claim form should include the evidence gathered at point 1, or if not separate written evidence should also be submitted.
  3. Court gives Directions and Fixes a Date for a Hearing
  4. Service of Claim Form on the Debtor and any other interested parties. Follow any other directions given by the Court at stage 3.
  5. Hearing – the Court will exercise their discretion as to whether an order is made. If an order is made it will give the Debtor one last chance to pay, after which the order will specify the date by which the Creditor should get possession of the property in order to facilitate the sale.
  6. The Order will specify the value the property should be sold for, the method by which the property should be sold and how legal title will be transferred to the purchaser.
  7. Sale Proceeds – if the property is sold successfully the proceeds will be applied in the following order:-
  • Costs and charges of sale.
  • Charges with priority (i.e. any mortgage/s).
  • If the property is jointly owned, the co-owner receives their share.
  • Creditor with Charging Order.
  • Any balance goes to the Debtor.

If, for whatever reason, an Order for Sale is not successful nothing will happen to the Charging Order – the charge will remain on the property and interest will continue to accrue.

Should you need any advice on Charging Orders or Orders for Sale, please get in touch with the team at