Chester 01244 405555

Grosvenor Court
Foregate Street Chester
Cheshire CH1 1HG
DX: 19990 Chester

Shrewsbury 01743 443 043

Lakeside House
Oxon Business Park
Shrewsbury SY3 5HJ
DX: 148563 Shrewsbury 14

Airport City, Manchester 0844 800 8346

Office 129
Manchester Business Park
3000 Aviator Way
Manchester M22 5TG

Send us a message
Our Offices

Squatting in a residential property to become a criminal offence

6th July, 2012

Section 144 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (the “Act”) creates a new offence of squatting in a residential building.

The Act defines “building” as including any structure or part of a structure (including a temporary or moveable structure).

Further, a building is “residential” if it is designed or adapted, before the time of entry by the squatter, for use as a place to live.

The Act received Royal Assent on 1 May 2012 and it is has now been confirmed that this will come into effect on 1 September 2012.

The new offence will be committed where a person does all of the following:

Is in a residential building as a trespasser, having entered it as a trespasser.

Knows or ought to know that he or she is a trespasser.

Is living in the building or intends to live there for any period.

It is irrelevant whether the person entered the building as a trespasser before or after the commencement of section 144.

The fact that a person derives title from a trespasser, or has the permission of a trespasser, does not prevent the person from being a trespasser.

However, the offence will not be committed by anyone holding over after the end of a lease or licence (even if they leave and re-enter the building).

It will not apply to commercial properties although residential buildings owned as part of a commercial undertaking will still be covered.

If you have any queries regarding this article or any other property issues contact Emma McGlinchey at [email protected] or on 01244 405567.

You might also be interested in...

Recognising When You Can Claim Adverse Possession

20th November, 2019

Adverse possession has posed a threat to land owners for a number of years. In the case of... Read More »

James Wallace Inheritance Tax Imagery for Article

Understanding how to save your beneficiaries Inheritance Tax

20th November, 2019

Why embracing the spirit of goodwill during the festive season could save your beneficiaries Inheritance Tax… It’s no... Read More »

Invertek Drives Aaron and Partners Deal

£100m deal for Welsh manufacturer rubber-stamped

14th November, 2019

Shropshire law firm Aaron & Partners plays a lead role in finalising one of the biggest international deals... Read More »

Contact Us