Use of an agent
48. Where a landlord is unable to cope with a management situation, the local authority should normally encourage the landlord to engage a reputable agent. The agent may act on behalf of the landlord in respect of the management responsibilities relating to the tenancy. However, the landlord will remain ultimately responsible if the expected standard of management is still not achieved or the actions detailed in the ASBN are not carried out.
49. The level of action which the agent will be able to take in relation to the antisocial behaviour will depend on the terms of the agreement between the landlord and the agent. Local authorities may wish to advise landlords on this when encouraging them to engage an agent. It would also be appropriate for officers to deal directly with the agent in providing advice and assistance in managing the antisocial behaviour where this function is part of the agreement between the landlord and agent. Contact with, and advice and assistance to, the landlord should however be continued in his or her capacity as the party legally responsible for the management of the tenancy.
50. It should be noted that an agent will not be guilty of any offence in failing to carry out the instructions of an ASBN or manage the tenancy to an acceptable standard - legal responsibility in this regard lies solely with the landlord.
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