On Sunday Robert Jenrick, the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, announced that the Government intend to amend the law on limitation to give home owners up to 15 years to initiate claims against those responsible for defective workmanship in their property.
Details of the Government's proposals remain to be seen. However, Mr Jenrick confirmed that the proposed change will operate retrospectively and that the change is intended to assist home owners in pursuing claims in relation to unsafe cladding installed to high-rise residential properties identified after the Grenfell Tower fire and to ensure that those responsible pay for the repair.
While the proposed change will undoubtedly be welcomed by many home owners, it is doubtful that the change will prove to be the panacea for home owners faced with significant bills for the repair of unsafe cladding (or other defects in their property) envisaged by the Government as it is likely that home owners will still face significant hurdles in pursuing claims against the developer of their property (for example, is the developer still trading, can a claim be successfully established against the developer, the likely cost of pursuing a claim etc.). As such, it is likely that many home owners will remain on the hook for the cost of repairs to their property.
The change in the law on limitation is set to be included in the draft Building Safety Bill which is set to be introduced to Parliament today.