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    • frustratedseller
    • By frustratedseller 12th Oct 17, 11:58 AM
    • 2Posts
    • 0Thanks
    Invalidated Indemnity Insurance
    • #1
    • 12th Oct 17, 11:58 AM
    Invalidated Indemnity Insurance 12th Oct 17 at 11:58 AM
    Apologies in advance for the long, rambling post!

    We are selling our house and almost at the point of exchange. The extension on our house was built in 1993 by the previous owner. On advice of our then solicitor we took out indemnity insurance when we purchased the house.

    Now we are selling, our buyers' solicitor requested documentation for the extension. We know that planning permission was granted - the previous owner was a Local Authority so I imagine they would have done everything by the book. We provided a copy of our indemnity insurance to our solicitor but also (due to some bad advice/not fully reading the policy) contacted the council to see if they could provide a copy of the buildings regulation certificate.

    The council do not have a copy of the buildings regulation certificate and, stupidly/unknowingly, we have now invalidated our indemnity insurance. Our solicitor suggested we ask for a letter from the council to state they won't enforce any action due to the extension being completed so long ago but I was told they don't issue them (this doesn't seem to be a problem in other boroughs). We really want to avoid applying for regularisation as we're on a tight budget and timescale and don't want the council taking plaster off the walls etc.

    Our sellers' solicitor had already contacted the council and was told the certificate couldn't be found. Wouldn't this have invalidated the indemnity policy anyway?

    Is a no-enforcement letter from the council worth pursuing?

    Is there any point in investing time in this considering the extension is 24 years old?! Sis our best option just to say there is no certificate and we're not willing to get building control in to regularise? I believe our buyers are in a similar situation with the property they're selling.
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    • davidmcn
    • By davidmcn 12th Oct 17, 12:19 PM
    • 7,845 Posts
    • 8,030 Thanks
    • #2
    • 12th Oct 17, 12:19 PM
    • #2
    • 12th Oct 17, 12:19 PM
    24 years is ancient history, any buyer ought to take a view rather than worry about the paperwork.
    • frustratedseller
    • By frustratedseller 12th Oct 17, 1:25 PM
    • 2 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    • #3
    • 12th Oct 17, 1:25 PM
    • #3
    • 12th Oct 17, 1:25 PM
    I agree, but I have a feeling it's not going to be that simple.
    • Lysimache
    • By Lysimache 12th Oct 17, 1:38 PM
    • 162 Posts
    • 52 Thanks
    • #4
    • 12th Oct 17, 1:38 PM
    • #4
    • 12th Oct 17, 1:38 PM
    This thread here on Mumsnet may offer some advice:
    • Slithery
    • By Slithery 12th Oct 17, 1:42 PM
    • 726 Posts
    • 1,132 Thanks
    • #5
    • 12th Oct 17, 1:42 PM
    • #5
    • 12th Oct 17, 1:42 PM
    Indemnity insurance only covers your legal costs if the council try and enforce. As the timescale for enforcement has long since passed then there is nothing to insure against, you might as well pay me 50 for a random piece of paper.
    • chappers
    • By chappers 12th Oct 17, 2:15 PM
    • 2,956 Posts
    • 1,707 Thanks
    • #6
    • 12th Oct 17, 2:15 PM
    • #6
    • 12th Oct 17, 2:15 PM
    I would direct your solicitor to reply something along the lines of the scope for enforcement of building regulations has long since past and the works are over 20 years old now. I suggest that your client satisfy themselves as to the quality of the works, via a suitable survey.
    Also this doesn't preclude that the works weren't signed off, just that due to the historic nature of the works there is no electronic copy and the paper certification just cannot be found.
    Also add in the fact that at the time the property was in the ownership of the local authority so it is highly unlikely that the works would have been carried out without the relevant permissions.
    Whether you have invalidated your indemnity is another matter altogether and something that could only be tested in the event of an attempted claim. It will all boil down as to whether the council have recorded the recent enquiries at all.
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