Mary is an experienced property litigation lawyer who specialises in advising clients within the social housing and lender sectors.
Mary heads up the Housing Management team and specialises in advising Registered Providers on all housing management issues (including tenancy agreements, policies and procedures) and housing litigation issues (including ASB, nuisance, possession claims, access, injunctions etc.) She works closely with housing managers and their teams to develop robust policies and procedures and to help them to effectively manage their properties.
Relevant housing experience includes:
- Obtained a without notice injunction with an exclusion zone around a village and a power of arrest for a social landlord after a neighbour received a serious death threat. Subsequently obtained an outright Order for Possession and a final injunction excluding the tenant from the area for 2 years. The case was complicated by disability discrimination issues which were successfully overcome.
Lender litigation is a specialist area and Mary has some 20 years’ experience of dealing with mortgage repossession claims, including defended claims for over-riding interest and undue influence. She provides pragmatic advice and solutions for what are often sensitive situations and is mindful of the need to avoid adverse publicity.
Relevant experience includes:
- Advised a lender in relation to a sensitive over-riding interest case where an elderly frail tenant made a Part 20 claim in the possession proceedings and the mortgagor was in prison for fraud. The case was further complicated by the mortgagor’s attempt to use the lender to remove his unwanted tenant. Negotiated an agreement which enabled the tenant to remain in the property for her lifetime with the mortgagor meeting his repayment obligations.
Mary offers a comprehensive service to private landlords with property portfolios, including drafting tenancy agreements, advising on breaches and disrepair claims, serving notice and bringing proceedings to recover possession. Mary understands the financial burden that a defaulting tenant causes and will advise on the most efficient and cost effective route to recover possession.
Relevant experience includes:
- Advised a private rent act tenant facing a possession order after his landlord made an application on the grounds that suitable alternative accommodation was available and that the property was beyond economic repair. A robust defence was entered which resulted in the landlord capitulating and agreeing to allow the tenant to remain, carrying out a major programme of repairs and renovations and contributing significantly to the tenant’s costs.
In a career with Wright Hassall spanning more than 20 years, Mary has at various times headed the Debt Recovery Team and led the Lender Litigation Team. For the past 15 years, she has specialised in social housing, advising on all aspects of housing and asset management. Mary is an experienced advocate in the County Court. She was made Partner in 2017
Mary is a Trustee of the Society of Saint Gregory, a School Governor and delivers workshops for church readers around the country. In what’s left of her time, she sings in her church choir and follows the fortunes of her football team, Aston Villa.