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Family who slept in car after being evicted allowed back home

The family returned on 20 November to find a notice from the Sheriff saying their home had been repossessed.

A FAMILY OF three who spent a night in their car after being locked out of their Blanchardstown apartment two weeks’ ago have been allowed back into their home, following a decision by a Dublin District Court judge.

Ventsislava Lyubenova, her husband and their ten-year-old son returned home to their apartment on 20 November last to find that the locks had been changed.

A notice, attached to the door, said that the Dublin County Sheriff had taken possession of the Property. The apartment was repossessed on behalf of EBS Building Society.

Lyubenova said in an affidavit presented in court that the family had then spent the night in their car, and had been staying with friends since then.

She opened a dispute with the Private Residential Tenancies Board in the days after her eviction.

In court today, barrister for the PRTB Eoghan Cole said that while it appeared EBS may not have known there were tenants in the property when an Order for Possession was made back in May, evidence showed the lender was probably aware there was someone living there before the Execution Order for Possession was issued.

Judge Pauline Codd was also told that ESB had offered to restore Ventsislava and her family, subject to agreement on terms.

But Cole said the offer, while positive, fell short of what was required, and that the tenants should be readmitted pending an unconditional resolution of the dispute.

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After hearing arguments, Judge Codd issued a interim injuction allowing the family to return — and the matter will be back before the court on Thursday of next week.

A spokesperson for the PRTB welcomed the decision of the court to reinstate family, adding:

“It is hoped that this decision sends a clear message that tenants rights under the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 must be respected, regardless of whether the premises is being repossessed.”

The PRTB  provides dispute resolution services relating to disputes over tenancy, as part of the measures contained in the Residential Tenancies Act.

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Daragh Brophy

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