Mohammed Nazir, head of Wosskow Brown's property and immigration departments writes regularly in the publication ILM, which is popular in the Asian community. His articles are published in English and in Urdu. Here is Mohammed's article that was published in September 2011.
Q. I want to take a lease of a property and use it as a hot food takeaway but the property doesn’t have planning permission. What should I do?
A. If the property hasn’t got planning permission then you should come to an agreement with the landlord (the property owner) that once planning permission is granted, he will be bound to give you the lease. As there is apprehension that if the planning permission is granted, the landlord is not duty bound to give you the lease, it is essential that the agreement is in place before you submit the planning permission application.
Q. I am becoming a partner in a business but my name is not included on the lease, will this affect me?
A. If your name is not on the lease it can be added via Assignment of Lease or your name can be added in the Partnership Agreement as a special provision that the existing partner holds the lease in trust for two partners.
Q. Could you please explain what Chancel Repair Liability Search is?
A. It is a search which determines whether the property is in Chancel Repair liability area. If a property is near a church, or is on land formerly owned by some of the older universities, there may be an obligation to contribute towards repairs to the chancel of the local parish church. This was laid down in the Chancel Repairs Act 1932. Such liability is enforceable in the County Court, and can apply to properties falling within a Church of England parish which has a vicar or had a vicarage and has a church dating from the medieval period or earlier.
Q. I am buying a property and my solicitor has advised that I have to take Defective Title Insurance. What is this?
A. Defective Title Indemnity Insurance policies are widely used in the property industry to cover defects in the Title. These Indemnity Insurance policies are available according to the value of the property and the level of risk. Lenders use Conveyancing Indemnity Policies for residential and commercial mortgages so solicitors have done their due diligence. According to the risk they put the insurance in place to cover Unknown Restrictive Covenants, lost Title deeds, Defective Titles, Good Leaseholds, Possessory Titles etc.
Q. I wish to retire as a Partner, how will this affect the lease, which I am included in ?
A- The simplest way to retire as a partner is to speak to the partners directly and inform them of your intention. The partners can then agree on the way forward for example purchase of the interest of the leaving partner.
It is important to be aware that if you leave the partnership, your liability continues in relation to the debts owned by the firm up to the date of your departure. A written agreement can be formally prepared, which states that you are released from you liability, but this may be at the cost of reducing the value of your interest.
In connection with the lease, you are required to seek the permission of your landlord and ask whether you can assign the lease to your partners. It is often the case that a landlord would refuse to remove you as a tenant, as it is beneficial for him to have more tenants to recover rent. If this is so, the best practice is to also address in the written agreement with your partners, that they are willing to indemnify you for all the rent due after your departure.
Mohammed can be contacted on 0114 256 4796 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org