Gas Safety advice for landlords

Gas Safety

The gas safety regulations require that a copy of the gas safety certificate must be provided to an existing tenant within 28 days, however, this time-limit does not apply with respect to compliance with the prescribed legal requirements for the service of a section 21 notice [1].

Landlords must ensure to provide tenants with a copy of the gas safety certificate before they take up occupation of the property and also within 28 days’ of every other gas safety check which is carried out.

The courts have made it clear that landlords owe a duty of care to occupiers, and have a responsibility to take reasonable steps to deal with a risk of death from gas [2]. In one case, where the flue from a fixed gas fire was connected to a chimney that had become blocked, the landlord was found to be responsible for disrepair [3]. For more information see the section on Liability for disrepair.

The ‘responsible person’ of any premises has a duty not to use an appliance if it is known or suspected to be unsafe [5]. ‘Responsible person’ means the occupier of the premises or, if there is no occupier or the occupier is away, the owner, or agent of the owner [5]. Tenants should report all faults immediately to their landlord or the managing agent.

There are potential issues with section 21 evictions where a landlord has not provided the tenant with a valid gas safety certificate before they moved into the property following a court ruling in the county court on appeal, you can read our article on this here:

[1] reg 2(2) Assured Shorthold Tenancy Notices and Prescribed Requirements (England) Regulations 2015 SI 2015/1646; reg 36(6) Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 SI 1998/2451.

[2] R. v Singh, The Times, April 19 1999, CA and Sykes v Harry and another [2001] EWCA Civ 167 CA.

[3] Churchill v Nottingham City Council, Nottingham County Court, 19 August 1999.

[4] reg 34(1) Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 SI 1998/2451.

[5] reg 34(2) Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 SI 1998/2451.

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