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Dispute Resolution

Property Disputes and Landlord and Tenant Advice

Our Residential Property team deals with a wide range of disputes, including landlord and tenant problems; tenancy issues; neighbour and boundary disputes; and service charge disputes – as well as non-contentious matters, including drafting tenancy documentation and enfranchisement.

We recognise the difficulties these areas pose, and aim to deliver clear, cost-effective advice to achieve a positive outcome for you. As experienced advocates in the High Court, County Court and Tribunal, with a reputation for excellence in this area of law, we’re happy to help. Just speak to one of our team.

man and woman in business meeting

Dean Wilson offers exceptional expertise in Conveyancing, ensuring seamless property transactions. Our specialist Residential Property team excels in handling Property Disputes, providing strategic solutions to resolve conflicts effectively. Additionally, we offer comprehensive Landlord and Tenant Advice, guiding clients through the intricacies of leasing arrangements. 

With a reputation for excellence and a deep understanding of property law, we are committed to delivering high class legal services in these key areas, ensuring our clients receive reliable and effective support in their property matters.

Property Disputes and Landlord and Tenant Advice

Our Property solicitors in Brighton can help with:

If you are a landlord and would like advice because your tenant has stopped paying the rent or you want to gain possession, we have a wealth of experience in dealing with such matters quickly and cost-effectively. If you are a tenant and would like advice in relation to your landlord’s obligations, our expert team would be happy to assist you. We can deal with possession notices and proceedings, deposit disputes and debt recovery matters for both landlords and tenants.

Most residential premises are now let on assured shorthold tenancies but there are some forms of tenancy that attract security. As we have been advising on such matters for decades, we have experience in dealing with security of tenure issues and the most cost-effective and straightforward ways of resolving issues, whether for the tenant or the landlord. Possession of premises is sometimes necessary and we can guide you through the procedures for possession in respect of both assured shorthold tenancies and other forms of tenancies, from agricultural to contractual tenancies.

Our experienced team deals with advice on long leases, on the gamut of legislation relating to residential long leases and service charge disputes and on issues relating to repairs. We regularly represent clients in the Tribunal and the County Court regarding such matters and are recommended by surveyors, agents and indeed Tribunal members for our recognised expertise in this area. We are happy to discuss matters with you to see if we can assist and we provide early cost estimates to enable you to make informed decisions.

We have extensive knowledge in this specialist area, acting for both building contractors and associates as well as for homeowners. Whether you have an issue with work done to your property or whether you have a Party Wall Act dispute or an issue regarding an insurance-backed scheme that you may be struggling to deal with, our team will be happy to assist and welcomes queries in relation to all such matters.

Your Property Disputes and Landlord and Tenant experts

Get to know those who are here to help you

Claire Whiteman and Gabrielle Moffatt are members of The Property Litigation Association.

Claire Whiteman Dean Wilson

Claire Whiteman

Partner, Dispute Resolution

Claire Whiteman Dean Wilson

Claire Whiteman

Partner, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Claire’s expertise is in property related disputes, landlord and tenant matters, and enfranchisement matters.

Claire’s clients include commercial and private landlords, property agents, tenants’ associations, trusts and other commercial entities in the leisure and retail sector nationwide. Her work is derived almost entirely from recommendations.

She is recommended in Chambers & Partner.  Claire has a good eye for those all-important details, undertakes advocacy and has a practical working relationship with other professionals. Her strong belief in looking after her clients' best interests is her motivating force.

Qualifications, Membership 

  • Solicitor
  • Member of the Property Litigation Association
  • Member of ALEP
  • Chambers & Partner recommended solicitor 2024 (ranked for 9 years) 

Claire can be contacted by email: clw@deanwilson.co.uk 

Whiteman, Claire

duncan wilks dean wilson

Duncan Wilks

Partner, Dispute Resolution 

duncan wilks dean wilson

Duncan Wilks

Partner, Dispute Resolution 

Areas of Specialism

Duncan advises clients on a range of contentious issues including commercial lease renewals, dilapidations, rent disputes, forfeiture, construction disputes and trusts in land.  He also advises on property related professional negligence disputes and development issues such as boundary disputes and easements.

His other main area of practice corporate insolvency and bankruptcy and in particular, litigation arising out of transactions at undervalue, preferences and issues regarding directors.

Duncan has good experience of broader commercial issues including contractual disputes and debt recovery.  

Recent Client Matters

  • Acting for a landlord in a successful application to the Land Tribunal for a declaration of breach of lease owing to the tenant (a housing authority) placing residents in their properties who abused drugs. 
  • Acting for the liquidator of a well-known company bringing a successful claim against a director for breach of fiduciary duties.
  • Successfully acting for a defendant company in a multi-million pound claim relating to unpaid commission for investment introductions.
  • Successful defence against a winding up petition on the basis of unfair prejudice brought against company and its sole director
  • Numerous successful outcomes to arrears and insurance claims for both tenant and landlord arising out of the Covid-19 pandemic.  

Duncan can be contacted by email: drw@deanwilson.co.uk or on his direct dial: 01273 249236

Gabrielle Moffatt Dean Wilson

Gabrielle Moffatt

Partner, Dispute Resolution  

Gabrielle Moffatt Dean Wilson

Gabrielle Moffatt

Partner, Dispute Resolution  

Areas of Specialism

Gabrielle is a solicitor in the firm’s Dispute Resolution team with over 20 years of experience in property litigation. 

Gabrielle’s commercial landlord and tenant practice makes up a core part of her workload. She acts for  both landlords and tenants on various issues, including breach of covenant, dilapidation claims, contentious lease renewals  and forfeiture. 

Gabrielle has a strong interest in real property disputes, especially arising from development of land. She acts in many cases concerning restrictive covenants, boundary disputes, easements and adverse possession. 

Gabrielle is the firm’s specialist on fire safety following the implementation of the Building Safety Act 2022 and associated legislation. She regularly delivers seminars to Managing Agents to keep them abreast of the changes in the law affecting all aspects of residential block management. 

Gabrielle also overseas the team’s insurance funded work where we act for Landlords in recovering possession of their properties let on shorthold tenancies.  

Gabrielle’s practice area is UK-wide and she conducts cases in various courts and Tribunals to include the Technology and Construction Court. 

Recent Client Matters

  • Acting for an overseas company with a portfolio of UK properties in several dilapidation claims, including claims against the Secretary of State and Lloyds Bank PLC
  • Acting for a group of flat owners in an action against its freeholder for remedial works to address fire safety defects at the building 
  • Acting for developer in an application under Section 84 of the Law of Property Act 1925 to discharge restrictive covenants on land that preventing the construction of new houses 

Qualifications, Membership & Directory Rankings

  • Solicitor LLB Hons
  • Advanced Diploma in Litigation 
  • Member of Property Litigation Association 

Recognition 

Gabrielle is ranked as a leading lawyer and next generation partner for property litigation by both Chambers and Partners and Legal 500. 

‘Dedicated and excellent in addressing the issues and working to resolve the dispute. Good communication and tailored service. Highly recommend.’

‘We are being advised by Gabrielle Moffatt. She has been supportive and extremely helpful in dealing with the complex and continuing problems we are facing, in a situation which involves dealing with some extremely aggressive and difficult people. We have received excellent advice and Gabrielle Moffatt’s thoroughness, helpfulness, professional and personable approach has been very supportive and beneficial during that time we have been seeking advice from her.’

"I have been extremely impressed and reassured by Gabrielle's attention to detail and professionalism. She has made an extremely stressful process vastly more bearable."

Gabrielle can be contacted by email: grm@deanwilson.co.uk or on her direct dial: 01273 249253

Gabrielle’s secretary Vanisha Parekh’s can be contacted by email: vxp@deanwilson.co.uk or her direct dial 01273 032355.

Moffatt, Gabrielle

Nicholas Perkins Dean Wilson

Nicholas Perkins

Partner, Dispute Resolution

Nicholas Perkins Dean Wilson

Nicholas Perkins

Partner, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Nicholas is a Partner in our Dispute Resolution team.

Having been admitted as a solicitor in 1982 he has  a wealth of experience and there are few areas of Litigation and Dispute Resolution with which he has not been involved over his long career with the firm be it general contract or building disputes lease renewals equine law or even Admiralty matters 

He has in particular always specialised in Landlord and tenant matters – both residential and commercial – and has a substantial practice advising and acting for letting and managing agents  and their landlord clients locally, and both  in London and throughout the Country 

He is also an acknowledged expert in Liquor Licensing matters for Pubs clubs and restaurants and regularly appears before Licensing committees both locally and  further afield  promoting his client’s applications 

Underpinning all his dealings for his clients is a determination to be efficient and most importantly, cost effective.

Recent Client Matters

  • Acting for a well-known and respected agent in a multi-party dispute and achieving settlement
  • Obtaining  a complicated Premises License for the social areas of a multimillion pound residential development 
  • Successfully defending a Review application brought by the Police seeking to revoke a large Public House’s Premises license.
  • Advising a national chain of letting and estate agents on a review of their legal procedures and documentation

Qualifications

  • Solicitor
  • LLB Hons
Rebecca Roberts

Rebecca Roberts

Associate Solicitor, Dispute Resolution

Rebecca Roberts

Rebecca Roberts

Associate Solicitor, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Rebecca is a Solicitor in the General Litigation team and specialises in dispute resolution, breach of contract, construction disputes, property litigation - including possession claims and debt recovery and enforcement. 

Recent Client Matters

  • Rebecca successfully obtained a freezing injunction in the high court for her client to prevent the Defendant dissipating their assets ahead of high court action.
  • Rebecca settled a complex high court case reported in the media in respect of a construction dispute – Rebecca achieved a three-figure settlement figure for her client.
  • Rebecca settled a breach of contract dispute concerning bonus payments – this was settled ahead of a multi-track trial and achieved a very favourable financial result for the client.
  • Rebecca has been instructed by and defended high profile clients in the music industry where Rebecca had the claim against them dismissed.

Qualifications, Membership 

  • Solicitor (LLB Hons)
daniel dickson dean wilson

Daniel Dickson

Associate Solicitor, Dispute Resolution

daniel dickson dean wilson

Daniel Dickson

Associate Solicitor, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Daniel is an Associate Solicitor who specialise in Property Litigation matters. Daniel has experience
in dealing with landlord and tenant disputes for both residential and commercial properties, real
estate disputes, lease extensions and enfranchisement. Daniel also deals with contractual disputes,
debt collection, claims under the Consumer Credit Act, and takes a keen interest in taxi licensing
having been instructed in the leading case of Kaivanpor v Sussex Central Justices (High Court).

Recent Client Matters

  • Claim for possession of a residential property upon the grounds of redevelopment;
  • Opposing a claim for a new lease of a commercial property (pursuant to the Landlord and
    Tenant Act 1954) based upon alleged breaches of leasehold covenants;
  • Appeal against a noise abatement notice served by the Local Authority upon a well-known
    and highly regarded local restaurant;
  • Appeal against the revocation of a taxi licence by Brighton & Hove City Council.

Qualifications, Membership & Directory Rankings

  • Solicitor (LLB Hons)
  • Committee of the Sussex Law Society
  • “Solicitor Daniel Dickson is well regarded for his work on disputes involving forfeiture and
    breach of contract”; “A well led property team has meant that there are various up and
    coming junior solicitors learning from talented partners and are being prepared to be the
    next stars. Daniel Dickson requires particular mention” – Legal 500, 2022

Daniel can be contacted by email (djd@deanwilson.co.uk) or on his direct dial (01273 249232).
Daniel is assisted by Melissa Birkhead, Paralegal, within the Dispute Resolution Department.
Melissa’s can be contacted by email (mrb@deanwilson.co.uk) or on her direct dial (01273 032340).

Lily Hossani Dean Wilson

Lily Hossini

Solicitor, Dispute Resolution

Lily Hossani Dean Wilson

Lily Hossini

Solicitor, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Lily is a Solicitor in the firm’s Dispute Resolution department, specialising in Landlord and Tenant matters. She assists with leasehold disputes, lease extensions (both statutory and informal), freehold acquisitions (both collective enfranchisement and first right of refusal claims), right to manage claims, licences for alterations and deeds of variation. 

Qualifications, Membership & Directory Rankings

  • Law Degree, LLB Hons
  • Legal Practice Course, LPC
  • Law, Business and Management, MSc

Memberships

Dean Wilson is a member of the Association of Leasehold Enfranchisement Practitioners (“ALEP”). ALEP promotes best practice by vetting organisations to ensure a consistently high level of service so that leaseholders and freeholders can contact ALEP members with confidence.

Lily can be contacted by email: LSH@deanwilson.co.uk or on her direct dial: 01273 032326 

Lily is assisted by Faye Cann, Paralegal within the Dispute Resolution department. Faye’s contact details are - email: FCC@deanwilson.co.uk  and direct dial: 01273 032353.

jasmine cattigan dean wilson

Jasmine Cattigan

Trainee Solicitor

jasmine cattigan dean wilson

Jasmine Cattigan

Trainee Solicitor

Areas of Specialism

Jasmine is currently in her second training seat in the Commercial Property team.

Prior to starting her training contract, Jasmine had previously paralegalled in the Dispute Resolution department specialising in residential re-possession claims in which she acted for Letting agents as well as private landlords on a national scale. Jasmine routinely advised on s8 and s21 proceedings, disrepair claims and debt recovery/ enforcement matters. 

Jasmine has also had extensive experience in the firm’s Personal Injury & Clinical Negligence department where she assisted the Head of Department, Alex Brown, with claimants who had suffered Personal Injuries, Criminal Injuries & Medical Negligence resulting in:

  • Brain Injuries
  • Spinal Cord injuries
  • Birth Injuries
  • Amputations
  • Severe Orthopaedic Injuries

Jasmine also had conduct of her own cases, securing settlements for client’s who have suffered injuries arising from the following circumstances:

  • Road traffic accidents
  • Accidents at work
  • Falls in public places
  • Clinical negligence 
  • Criminal Injuries 

Jasmine is known for her commitment to her clients and ability to quickly understand key issues in resolving disputes. She is able to work collaboratively with clients to help them achieve the best outcome for their case.

Recent Client Matters

Qualifications, Membership 

  • LLB Hons Law
  • LPC with LLM 

Jasmine can be contacted by email: jlc@deanwilson.co.uk or on her direct dial: 01273 249246.

Michaela Tutt Dean Wilson

Michaela Tutt

Senior Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Michaela Tutt Dean Wilson

Michaela Tutt

Senior Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Michaela is a Senior Paralegal in the Dispute Resolution team who specialises in Landlord and Tenant disputes.

Michaela graduated from the University of the West of England in 2014 and has nearly 10 years’ experience in the legal industry. Michaela joined Dean Wilson in January 2024 and has built her background in general litigation, including property litigation, personal injury, debt recovery and clinical negligence matters.

Qualifications

  • LLB Hons (2.1) 

Michaela can be contacted by email: MCT@deanwilson.co.uk or on her direct dial: 01273 249250. 

Sara Nilsen

Sara Nilsen

Senior Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Sara Nilsen

Sara Nilsen

Senior Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Sara is a Senior Paralegal within the Dispute Resolution department and has extensive experience in all matters concerning residential possession claims. Sara represents both landlords and tenants and also works with providers of insurance cover for landlords. 

Additionally, Sara has experience in regard to breaches in relation to running Holiday Lets, from a lease perspective, acting for both leaseholders and freeholders. 

Sara is fluent in English and Norwegian and has a working knowledge of the Scandinavian languages. 

Recent Client Matters

  • Acting for the landlord in a defended section 21 of the Housing Act 1988 claim with disrepair dispute and successfully obtaining possession order and costs
  • Acting for the landlord in a defended section 8 of the Housing Act 1988 claim with subletting breach

Qualifications, Membership & Directory Rankings

  • Bachelor of Law from University of Sussex (LLB)

Sara can be contacted by email: sn@deanwilson.co.uk or on her direct dial: 01273 249276

William Spratt

William Spratt

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

William Spratt

William Spratt

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Willam is a paralegal in our Dispute Resolution Department specialising in possession claims. William has experience in dealing with landlord and tenant disputes. William acts as the firsthand communication point for the team for any queries from clients or tenants.

Recent Client Matters

Assisting in claims for possession of residential property based on no-fault eviction, and breach of tenancy including:

  • Animals in the property
  • Damage to the property
  • Arrears

Qualifications, Membership & Directory Rankings

  • Bachelor of Law with Criminology (LLB Hons) from Oxford Brookes University

William can be contacted by email: wgs@deanwilson.co.uk or on direct dial: 01273 032354

izabela toma dean wilson

Izabela Toma

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

izabela toma dean wilson

Izabela Toma

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Area of Specialism

Izabela is a proficient paralegal specialising in property litigation.

Izabela independently handles residential possession proceedings and is experienced in dealing with disputed matters. She consistently strives to resolve conflicts, seeking to achieve the best outcome for her clients.

She also works closely with a Partner to assist in various types of disputes, including title disputes, forfeiture under commercial leases, lease variation, and determination of service charge reasonability.

Recent Cases

Regularly acts for the Legal Protection Group in nationwide property possession proceedings.

Successfully handled a case involving the eviction of a trespasser in which she achieved a favourable financial resolution for the client, avoiding the need for court proceedings.

Assisted in representing an RTM company for an application to the First-Tier Property Tribunal for the determination of service charge reasonability and the variation of a lease.

Qualifications

Izabela graduated with a First-class degree from the University of Law, Guildford, and holds an award for the highest average mark at her campus.

Izabela can be contacted by email: ixt@deanwilson.co.uk or on her direct dial: 01273249296.

katiee griffiths dean wilson

Katiee Griffiths

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

katiee griffiths dean wilson

Katiee Griffiths

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Katiee is a paralegal in the Dispute Resolution team assisting on a variety of major and routine legal matters within the department. Katiee manages her own cases and prides herself on getting the best outcome for our clients. Katiee is experienced in rent mediation and section 21 and section 8 claims. 

Katiee also leads the Welsh matters within the team giving her experience in both English and Welsh claims.

Recent Client Matters

  • Supporting landlords who have not received rent payments from tenants for an extensive period of time. Drafting notices and proceedings to obtain rent arrears, possession orders and costs in the case.
  • Advocating for a client who wishes to obtain their property back from a tenant who refuses to move out after the fixed term has ended.
  • Working closely with a wide range of letting agents to assist landlords and tenants with property disputes.
  • Drafting letters before action and filing claim forms to help clients get the best outcomes.

Qualifications, Membership 

  • Bachelor of Law (LLB Hons)
  • LLM Master of Law Degree
  • Currently undergoing her LPC (Legal Practice Course)
Faye Cann Dean Wilson

Faye Cann

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Faye Cann Dean Wilson

Faye Cann

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Faye is a paralegal specialising in Lease extensions and enfranchisements. Faye deals with matters such as Deeds of Covenant, Licences to Assign and Notices of Transfer and works closely with Claire Whiteman and Lisa Osborne.

Qualifications, Membership & Directory Rankings

  • Faye is currently studying with CILEX alongside her work
Kalia Shellard Dean Wilson

Kalia Shellard

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Kalia Shellard Dean Wilson

Kalia Shellard

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Kalia is a Paralegal within the Dispute Resolution team specialising in Landlord and Tenant Disputes. 

Kalia is a highly motivated individual who has experience managing her own caseload and always strives to achieve the best outcome for her clients. 

Qualifications, Membership & Directory Rankings

  • LLB Hons
Melissa Birkhead

Melissa Birkhead

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Melissa Birkhead

Melissa Birkhead

Paralegal, Dispute Resolution

Areas of Specialism

Melissa works in our Dispute Resolution team, assisting on a variety of contentious cases with a focus on residential property litigation. Specialising in possession claims, she operates her own case load and prides herself on creating longstanding relationships with her clients. Melissa is also experienced in assisting clients with matters such as breach of contract, contractor disputes, and common money claims.

Day to day activities include drafting notices, letters before action, and filing claim forms. Melissa also advocates for clients at possession hearings in local Sussex courts.

Recent Client Matters

Regularly working with a nationwide letting agent to aid landlords and tenants with property disputes.

Advocating for a client who hadn’t received rent payments for a significant period, leading to a possession order, rent arrears, and costs in the case being awarded.

Drafting a letter before claim for a leaseholder whose daughter with a disability had been refused permission for an emotional support dog to live in the property, resulting in the freeholder granting permission. 

Qualifications

LLB Hons

Melissa can be contacted by email: mrb@deanwilson.co.uk or on her direct dial: 01273 032340.

Thank you for looking after me so well…a very comprehensive team.

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