Licensees of absent tenants

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By Bukola Aremu

The landlord cannot recover possession from a licensee of an absent tenant unless the tenancy has been brought to an end.  

If the tenant no longer occupies the property, the tenancy cannot be assured and becomes a common law tenancy, which can be terminated by a notice to quit (NTQ). Similarly, a secure tenancy will lose its secure status.  

Assuming that there is no successor (spouse plus 12 months’ residence if periodic assured tenancy, family member plus 12 months’ residence if secure), the tenancy will continue to be held by the tenant’s estate. Note that there can be no succession to a fixed-term assured tenancy, which will devolve according to the tenant’s will or the rules of intestacy…

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