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Housing (Scotland) Act 2006

Status:

This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

SCHEDULE 4Applications for HMO licences: procedure

(introduced by section 129)

This schedulenoteType=Explanatory Notes has no associated

Content of application

1(1)An application for an HMO licence must be written in such form as the local authority may reasonably require.

(2)Such an application must set out—

(a)the address of the living accommodation concerned,

(b)in the case of an application by an individual, the name and address of the applicant,

(c)in the case of an application by a body, the information set out in sub-paragraph (3),

(d)if the applicant wishes the HMO licence to authorise an agent to act for the applicant in relation to the occupation of the living accommodation—

(i)where the agent is an individual, the name and address of the agent, or

(ii)where the agent is a body, the information set out in sub-paragraph (3),

(e)any other information which the Scottish Ministers may by order require to be set out in such an application, and

(f)any other information which the local authority may reasonably require.

(3)The information referred to in sub-paragraph (2)(c) and (d)(ii) is—

(a)the name of the body,

(b)the body’s principal office, and

(c)the name and address of each of the directors, partners or other persons concerned in the management of the body.

(4)The application must be—

(a)signed by or on behalf of the applicant, and

(b)accompanied by the application fee (see section 161).

Notice of application

2(1)A “notice of HMO application” is a notice which—

(a)states that an application for an HMO licence has been made in respect of living accommodation,

(b)sets out the information described in paragraph 1(2) and (3) (excluding the information described in sub-paragraph (3)(c) of that provision),

(c)states the date of the notice,

(d)explains the procedure for making written representations about the application to the local authority.

(2)The applicant must cause a notice of HMO application to be displayed on or near to the living accommodation concerned for 21 days from the date on which the application is made.

(3)The applicant must ensure that the notice of HMO application is designed and displayed so that it can be conveniently read by the public.

(4)The removal, obscuring or defacement of a notice of HMO application does not affect compliance with sub-paragraphs (2) and (3) if the applicant—

(a)took reasonable steps to prevent (and did not cause) the removal, obscuring or defacement, and

(b)on becoming aware of such an event, replaced the notice.

(5)An applicant who considers that sub-paragraphs (2) and (3) have been complied with must certify that fact to the local authority.

(6)Where—

(a)a notice of HMO application is removed, obscured or defaced during the period for which it must be displayed, but

(b)the applicant considers that compliance with sub-paragraphs (2) and (3) is, because of sub-paragraph (4), unaffected,

the certificate must state the relevant circumstances.

(7)If the local authority is satisfied that sub-paragraph (2) or (3) has not been complied with in the manner certified by the applicant, it may require the applicant to cause a notice of HMO application to be displayed on or near the living accommodation concerned for 21 days from such date as the authority may specify.

(8)Sub-paragraphs (3) to (7) apply in relation to a duty under sub-paragraph (7) as they apply in relation to a duty under sub-paragraph (2).

(9)On receiving an application for an HMO licence, the local authority—

(a)must send a copy of the application to the chief officer of the fire and rescue authority and the chief constable, and

(b)may give a notice of HMO application in a newspaper circulating in its area.

Notices: exceptions

3(1)This paragraph applies where the local authority considers, on the submission of any applicant—

(a)that the applicant has been unable to comply with paragraph 2(2) or (3) because of a lack of necessary rights (of access or otherwise) despite having taken reasonable steps for the purposes of acquiring those rights, or

(b)that complying with paragraph 2(2) or (3) is likely to jeopardise—

(i)the safety or welfare of any persons, or

(ii)the security of any premises.

(2)Where this paragraph applies the local authority must—

(a)disapply paragraph 2(2) to (8) in relation to the application concerned by serving notice of the disapplication to the applicant, and

(b)serve, or require the applicant to serve, notice of HMO application on the occupiers of such premises in the vicinity of the living accommodation concerned as the authority thinks fit.

(3)The local authority must give notice under paragraph 2(9)(b) where this paragraph applies because of sub-paragraph (1)(a) of this paragraph.

(4)The local authority must not give notice under paragraph 2(9)(b) where this paragraph applies because of sub-paragraph (1)(b) of this paragraph.

(5)The Scottish Ministers may give directions to local authorities about circumstances in which authorities must consider that compliance with paragraph 2(2) or (3) is likely to jeopardise—

(a)the safety or welfare of persons, or

(b)the security of premises.

(6)Directions given under sub-paragraph 5 may be varied or revoked at any time.

Representations

4(1)A written representation about an application for an HMO licence is valid only if it—

(a)sets out the name and address of the respondent,

(b)is signed by or on behalf of the respondent, and

(c)is made on or before the deadline for making written representations.

(2)The deadline for making written representations is—

(a)where one or more notices of HMO application has or have been—

(i)displayed in pursuance of paragraph 2(2) or (7), or

(ii)served under paragraph 2(9)(b) or 3(2)(b),

the latest date specified in any such notice as the date by which written representations must be made, or

(b)where no such notice is given, the date which is 21 days after the date on which the application is made.

Inquiries

5(1)The local authority may make such inquiries about the application as the authority thinks fit.

(2)The local authority must make a report of any matter arising from any such inquiries which the local authority considers relevant to the determination of the application.

Applicant’s opportunity to respond

6(1)The local authority must give the applicant a copy of—

(a)any valid written representation,

(b)any late written representation which the authority intends to consider, and

(c)any report made under paragraph 5(2).

(2)A copy representation or report given under sub-paragraph (1) must be accompanied by a notice specifying the period (of not less than 7 days from the date on which the notice is given) during which the applicant may give a written response to the local authority on any matter set out in the copy representation or report.

Hearings

7(1)The local authority may decide to hear oral representations about the application.

(2)If the local authority decides to hold such a hearing, it must invite—

(a)the applicant,

(b)each respondent who has made a valid written representation or a late written representation which the authority intends to consider, and

(c)any other person it thinks fit,

to make oral representations.

(3)An invitation under sub-paragraph (1) must be given not less than 7 days before the proposed hearing.

Consideration of application

8(1)Before determining an application for an HMO licence, the local authority must consider any—

(a)valid written representations (unless withdrawn),

(b)reports made under paragraph 5(2),

(c)written responses given by the applicant in pursuance of paragraph 6(2) (within the period specified in that paragraph), and

(d)oral representations made in pursuance of paragraph 7.

(2)The local authority must not consider any written representation which is invalidated by paragraph (a) or (b) of paragraph 4(1).

(3)But the local authority may consider a late written representation if it is satisfied that it was reasonable for the respondent to make the representation after the deadline for doing so.

Time limit for determining application

9(1)The local authority must decide whether to grant or refuse an application for an HMO licence within 12 months of it receiving the application.

(2)The period mentioned in sub-paragraph (1) may be extended by the sheriff, on summary application by the local authority, by such period as the sheriff thinks fit.

(3)The sheriff may not extend a period unless the local authority applies for the extension before the period expires.

(4)The applicant is entitled to be a party to any proceedings on such a summary application.

(5)The sheriff’s decision on such an application is final.

(6)If the local authority does not determine an application for an HMO licence within the period mentioned in sub-paragraph (1) (or that period as extended), the authority is to be treated as having decided to grant the HMO licence unconditionally.

(7)Sub-paragraph (6) does not affect the local authority’s power to vary or revoke an HMO licence granted in pursuance of that sub-paragraph.

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