Termhouse (Clarendon Court) Management Limited v Al-Balhaa  EWCA Civ 1881
Tim Cowen represented the successful appellant in the Court of Appeal in Termhouse (Clarendon Court) Management Limited v Al-Balhaa  EWCA Civ 1881. The case concerned residential service charges. It is an important decision about the nature of First-tier Tribunal (“FTT”) determinations and how they can be enforced.
The Court of Appeal decided that where a statute gives the FTT jurisdiction to “determine” how much is payable by one of the parties (in this case under s27A of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985), that determination is declaratory in nature and cannot be enforced under CPR70.5 as if it were an order to pay a specific sum. Instead the landlord has to commence a fresh action in the county court for judgment for the debt.
The Court of Appeal distinguished between what is “payable” (eg after application of the reasonableness test for service charges) and what is “due” (ie the actual amount outstanding on any particular date). The judgment may be found here.