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Appeal FAQ's

Appeals / Tribunals / Enforcement of Determination Orders

Disclaimer

This document is a brief summary of the more common issues for landlords and tenants. It is not intended to be a comprehensive guide to, nor a legal interpretation of, the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 (“the Act”) “Even though care has been taken in the preparation and publication of this guidance note the Residential Tenancies Board, [its servants or agents] assume no responsibility for and give no guarantees, undertakings or warranties concerning the accuracy, completeness or up to date nature of the information provided in this guidance note and do not accept any liability whatsoever arising from any errors or omissions contained therein".

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Appeals from Adjudication

How soon should I submit/lodge my Appeal against an Adjudicators Determination?

Appeals against an Adjudicator’s Determination must be made within 10 working days from the date the Board serves on you the Adjudicator’s Report containing his/her decision i.e. 10 working days from the date you receive the Adjudicator’s Report through your letterbox. The Appeal must be posted to the RTB on or within the 10 working days. The onus is on you to ensure that your Appeal is within the permitted period. The RTB uses post tracking, and this service is used in order to calculate the correct date by which the RTB should have received your appeal.

Who may Appeal from an Adjudication?

Only the original parties (Applicant/Respondent) to the particular dispute may lodge an Appeal. An appeal may be lodged by a party’s nominated representative. Notice parties do not have a right to appeal the decision of an Adjudicator.

When will a dispute be referred to a Tenancy Tribunal after Adjudication?

A dispute will be referred to a Tenancy Tribunal if any of the parties wish to appeal the Adjudicator’s decision within 10 working days of the date the Adjudicator’s report is served on the parties.

Please note though that where an agreement is reached at adjudication the ‘cooling off’ period is 10 days from the date the agreement was made and if one or either of the parties wishes to refer the case to a Tenancy Tribunal they must do so within the 10 day cooling off period.

In certain exceptional cases the RTB may refer a dispute directly to the Tribunal, e.g. where there appears to be imminent risk of damage to the dwelling or danger to one of the parties.

The appeal period cannot be extended.

Referral (Appeal) from Mediation

How soon should I submit/lodge my referral (Appeal) after my Telephone Mediation?

Agreement Reached at Telephone Mediation

If an agreement is reached between you and the other party through telephone mediation all parties have 10 days from the date the agreement was reached to withdraw from the agreement and appeal to a Tenancy Tribunal. The 10 day appeal period cannot be extended.

If neither party withdraws from the agreement during the 10 day 'cooling off’ appeal period the agreement will form the basis for a binding Determination Order.

No Agreement Reached at Telephone Mediation

If no agreement is reached between you and the other party through telephone mediation all parties have 10 days from the date the telephone mediation ceases to appeal to a Tenancy Tribunal. The 10 day appeal period cannot be extended.

If neither party appeals the case to a Tenancy Tribunal the case will then be closed.

Who may send a referral following a Mediation?

Agreement Reached at Telephone Mediation

If an agreement is reached between you and the other party through telephone mediation all parties have 10 days from the date the agreement was reached to withdraw from the agreement and appeal to a Tenancy Tribunal. The 10 day appeal period cannot be extended.

If neither party withdraws from the agreement during the 10 day 'cooling off’ appeal period the agreement will form the basis for a binding Determination Order.

No Agreement Reached at Telephone Mediation

If no agreement is reached between you and the other party through telephone mediation all parties have 10 days from the date the telephone mediation ceases to appeal to a Tenancy Tribunal. The 10 day appeal period cannot be extended.

If neither party appeals the case to a Tenancy Tribunal the case will then be closed.

How much does it cost to make an Appeal?

It costs €100 to lodge/refer an appeal. (for registered online users the Appeal fee is €85). The PRTB will not accept cash but payment can be made by cheque, money order, postal order or by credit or debit card.

How do I make an Appeal/Referral?

Please see "How to Appeal"

Can I Email/Fax an Appeal/Referral and send the Fee in the Post?

No. To lodge a valid appeal/referral the fee must accompany the complete documentation and be on time.

What happens if my Appeal form is not lodged/submitted in time following Telephone Mediation?

The 10 day "cooling off"appeal period cannot be extended.

Where an Agreement is reached via Telephone Mediation and neither party appeal within the 10 day ‘cooling off’ appeal period, the Board will proceed to make a Determination Order based on the agreed terms under section 121 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 and this will be binding on the parties to the dispute.

If no Agreement was reached via Telephone Mediation and neither party appeal within the 10 day "cooling off" appeal period, the case will be closed.

 

Tribunal FAQ's

What is a Tenancy Tribunal hearing?

The Tenancy Tribunal hearing will be a full hearing of all the relevant facts of thedispute. Even though your case has already been heard by an Adjudicator or youhave attended at a Mediation hearing, you, and the other party, will be given theopportunity to present your case in its entirety and the Tenancy Tribunal willmake a decision on the information presented to it.

When will a dispute be referred to a Tenancy Tribunal?

Adjudication

Appeals against an Adjudicator’s Determination must be made within 10 working days from the date the Board serves on you the Adjudicator’s Report containing his/her decision i.e. 10 working days from the date you receive the Adjudicator’s Report through your letterbox. The Appeal must be posted to the RTB on or within 10 working days. The onus is on you to ensure that your Appeal is within the permitted period. The RTB uses post tracking, and this service is used in order to calculate the correct date by which the RTB should have received your appeal.

Please note though that where an agreement is reached at adjudication the ‘cooling off’ period is 10 days from the date the agreement was made and if one or either of the parties wishes to refer the case to a Tenancy Tribunal they must do so within the 10 day cooling off period.

Agreement Reached at Telephone Mediation 

If an agreement is reached between you and the other party through telephone mediation all parties have 10 days from the date the agreement was reached to withdraw from the agreement and appeal to a Tenancy Tribunal. The 10 day appeal period cannot be extended.

If neither party withdraws from the agreement during the 10 day 'cooling off’ appeal period the agreement will form the basis for a binding Determination Order.

No Agreement Reached at Telephone Mediation

If no agreement is reached between you and the other party through telephone mediation all parties have 10 days from the date the telephone mediation ceases to appeal to a Tenancy Tribunal. The 10 day appeal period cannot be extended.

If neither party appeals the case to a Tenancy Tribunal the case will then be closed

How soon should I submit my Appeal?

Please see "Appeals" for more information

Who may Appeal from an Adjudication?

Only the original parties (Applicant/Respondent) to the particular dispute may lodge an Appeal. An appeal may be lodged by a party’s nominated representative. Notice parties do not have a right to appeal the decision of an Adjudicator.

How much does it cost to make an Appeal?

It costs €100 to lodge/refer an appeal. (for registered online users the Appeal fee is €85). The RTB will not accept cash but payment can be made by cheque, money order, postal order or by credit or debit card.

How do I make an Appeal?

Please see "How to Appeal"

Can I Email/Fax an Appeal/Referral and send the Fee in the Post?

No. To lodge a valid appeal/referral the fee must accompany the complete documentation and be on time.

What happens if I do not Appeal within the allowed time?

Adjudication

The 10 working day appeal period cannot be extended. If the Adjudicator’s Determination is not appealed or your Appeal has not been lodged within the required time, the Board will proceed to make a Determination Order under section 121 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 and this will be binding on the parties to the dispute.

Mediation

The 10 day "cooling off"appeal period cannot be extended.

Where an Agreement is reached via Telephone Mediation and neither party appeal within the 10 day ‘cooling off’ appeal period, the Board will proceed to make a Determination Order based on the agreed terms under section 121 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 and this will be binding on the parties to the dispute.

If no Agreement was reached via Telephone Mediation and neither party appeal within the 10 day "cooling off" appeal period, the case will be closed.

However, in exceptional circumstances, where good grounds apply and at the RTB's discretion, this time period may be extended

What happens if my Appeal is lodged in time and with the correct fee?

Before an Appeal can be deemed to be a valid Appeal, the RTB must consider and grant the Appeal. You will be notified of the RTB's decision and only then will the case be referred to a Tenancy Tribunal.

How soon can I expect my case to be listed for hearing?

Due to the large volume of cases coming before the RTB, it is expected that, after lodging a valid appeal, the average timeframe after which your case is likely to be scheduled is within three to four months following the RTB granting approval of the appeal. In exceptional cases the date assigned for your Tribunal can be changed but only on receipt by the RTB of compelling evidence of the reasons why you need to have the date of your hearing changed. Therefore, if you are genuinely unavailable for any given period of time please tell us as soon as the appeal has been granted in order for avoid the need for rescheduling.

When will I know when my Hearing is due to be held?

You, and the other party/parties to your dispute, will be notified at least 21 days prior to the date on which the Tribunal hearing is due to be held. A Notice of Tenancy Tribunal Hearing will be issued to you and will include the date, time, venue and purpose of the hearing. In certain circumstances parties may be given a lesser period of notice if:

  • One or more of the parties requests a lesser period and the other party consent to such requests.
  • The dispute concerns alleged behaviour by one of the parties that poses an imminent danger of death or serious injury or imminent danger to the fabric of the dwelling concerned or the property containing that dwelling.
  • Where one or more of the parties indicates that there is financial or other hardship.

If, for any reason, e.g. holidays, you are unavailable at a particular time, it would be helpful if you could inform the Tribunal Section of the RTB in advance of the issue of the notification letters to you. While every effort will be made to take these into consideration when scheduling the Tribunal, no guarantee can be given that the RTB will be in a position to allow for the dates provided. As already stated, once a date for the Tribunal has been set, it will not be possible to postpone it, save in exceptional circumstances and with compelling evidence.

Where is my hearing likely to be held?

The RTB holds Tribunal hearings both regionally and in Dublin. Your Tribunal hearing will be held at a venue within a reasonable distance from the location of the dwelling, the subject of the dispute.

Can I withdraw my Appeal from Adjudication?

Yes. An appeal can be withdrawn by an appellant at any time prior to the Tribunal making a determination on the matter. If you wish to withdraw your Appeal prior to the hearing date you must write to the Board stating your wish to do so. However, if the matter is being dealt with by the Tribunal at a hearing, it will suffice for you to indicate orally to the Tribunal that you are withdrawing the matter.

Upon being notified of a withdrawal, the Tribunal is required to enquire whether the other party to the dispute objects to the withdrawal and, if such an objection is forthcoming, the Tribunal will sit to decide on any application for costs of the other party against you. In the event that the other party, upon being notified of the withdrawal, does not object, the Board will proceed to make a Determination Order under section 121 of the Residential Tenancies Act 2004 based on the Adjudicators decision and this will be binding on the parties to the dispute.

Is Legal Representation necessary?

The RTB now replaces the Courts in a majority of cases in relation to landlord and tenant disputes. The RTB was set up to deal with disputes on an informal basis and is intended to minimise expense in the resolution of landlord and tenant disputes. Accordingly, legal representation before the RTB, should not be necessary but parties are free to arrange for representation.

If a party intends to have legal representation at a Tribunal hearing before the RTB, notification of this should be given to the RTB within 7 days of the notification of the hearing date. Costs of legal or other professional representation before the RTB will only be awarded in exceptional circumstances and with the consent of the Board of the RTB.

Who decides the Appeal?

The Appeal will be assigned to three Tribunal Members appointed by the Board, one of which will act as the Chairperson of the Tribunal. The Tribunal Members, who are members of the Dispute Resolution Committee, will hear the dispute and make a decision based on the evidence before it.

Will all matters dealt with at the Adjudication be heard at the Tribunal?

This Tribunal will be a full hearing of all the facts of the dispute (i.e. a hearing de novo ) however, the parties may, by mutual consent, agree to limit the hearing to specific matters or issues arising from the adjudication, or to include matters that have arisen since the hearing.

Either before the hearing or at commencement, parties should endeavour to reach agreement on uncontroversial issues of facts. In similar fashion if possible, parties should also try to reach a wider agreement so as to limit the issues for decision by the Tribunal.

Can I access the Tribunal’s previous decisions in order to prepare my case?

Access to the Tribunal’s previous decisions and Determination Orders are available on the website at www.rtb.ie/disputes . Parties should bear in mind that each case will be decided on the facts of the particular dispute but parties may use earlier decisions as an aid to presenting their case.

Should I submit the documentation I intend to rely on before the hearing?

You should make sure that you give a copy of all evidence to the RTB at least 5 days before the hearing or at the earliest possible date after that. Such documents may consist of invoices, photographs, bank statements, the lease agreement (s), Notice of Termination etc. All submissions of evidence relevant to the case will be copied over to the other party. Documentation of no relevance to the tenancy in question should not be submitted and and will not be copied to the Tribunal unless you can show the relevance of the evidence submitted. Documents marked “without prejudice” will not be circulated.

How do I prepare my case?

An important factor in preparing your case for presentation to the Tribunal is to arrange the facts of the dispute in a straightforward and chronological order, so as to present the case in a clear and comprehensive manner. It would be of assistance to the Tribunal if documentation submitted as evidence was clearly categorised and a cover note, setting out the contents of the evidence, were attached. Where there are numerous documents these should be bound, paginated and five identical copies sent to the RTB 5 days in advance of the hearing. All submissions of evidence relevant to the case will be copied over to the other party. Documentation of no relevance to the tenancy in question should not be submitted and will not be copied to the Tribunal unless you can show the relevance of the evidence submitted.

What documentation may not be permitted into evidence?

The relevance of the documentation to the tenancy/dispute is the primary issue to bear in mind when submitting documentation. Specified documentation may not be permitted into evidence if it is not appropriate or relevant to the dispute. Please note that information/documentation submitted, including correspondence addressed to the RTB, will be circulated to all parties to the dispute, to include representatives, as well as the Tribunal. The onus is on the parties to redact (or refrain from submitting) information that they do not want to be circulated and also that documentation of no relevance to the tenancy in question should not be submitted. Documentation that is not being circulated will not be held on file and will be immediately returned to the party submitting the evidence.

Information/Documentation from persons not a party to the dispute:

If the documentation submitted includes e.g. a letter from a person that is not a party to the dispute or personal information relating to a non-party, the consent of that party to the circulation of this documentation/information must be obtained in advance of circulation and provided with the documentation in question.

Newspaper Clippings

If documentation submitted, such as a newspaper clipping, is ostensibly an attempt to cause damage to the good name of a party to a dispute (or also a nonparty) in relation to an issue that is not necessarily relevant to the dispute (or is undoubtedly completely irrelevant to the dispute), the RTB will notify the party submitting the documentation that, provisionally, same will be redacted or cannot be circulated. The party must explain the basis upon which the offending document was submitted if they remain of the view that the documentation should be submitted.

Documentation unlawfully obtained:

Where a document submitted appears to have been unlawfully obtained or other documentation the submitting party clearly should not have in their possession, the RTB will notify the party submitting the documentation that, provisionally, same will be redacted or cannot be circulated. The party must explain the basis upon which the offending document was submitted.

What type of documents should I submit to the RTB prior to the hearing?

If your tenancy is the subject of a written lease agreement, whether still in force or expired, you should submit a copy of this document.

You should submit a copy of all correspondence sent or received by you or your Agent, relating to the dispute.

If the dispute relates to rent, you should submit a copy of your rent book, rent receipts, relevant bank statements, proof of any agreement relating to rent, your own note setting out arrears of rent due or rent overpaid and all other documentation which you intend to refer, in support of or in defence of your case.

If the dispute concerns damage to the dwelling, the contents of the dwelling or to your personal property, you should submit a copy of all receipts for repairs or replacements carried out, along with copy photographs, original inventory for the dwelling, list of damaged items and receipts for original purchase of items and all other documentation which you intend to refer, in support of or in defence of your case. Please note that quotations may not be accepted as proof that repairs were carried out.

If the dispute concerns a Notice of Termination, you should submit a copy of the Notice of Termination with you and a copy of all correspondence sent or received relating to the Notice of Termination to include warning letters and all documentation evidencing attempts to have any breaches of landlord/tenant obligations remedied within a reasonable time (if applicable).

If the dispute relates to monies due on foot of utility bills, you should submit a copy of with the relevant gas bill, electricity bill or other utility bill and a copy of all related correspondence.

Please note that, having submitted copies of the documentation/evidence relevant to your case, you should bring with you to the Tribunal hearing the original of any documents previously submitted.

What evidence should I include (based on the type of dispute)?

The document located here explains suggested evidence requirements where the dispute concerns:

  • Deposit Retention
  • Alleged damage to property or standard and maintenance of the dwelling
  • Notice of Termination
  • Alleged Rent Arrears
  • Unlawful Termination / Illegal Eviction

The document can be viewed by clicking the link below.

What evidence should I include if the dispute concerns the following

I forgot to submit certain evidence prior to my hearing; can I submit it at the hearing?

The Tribunal will only consider evidence given in on the day in exceptional circumstances and only if necessary in the interests of justice.

Can I subpoena someone to appear at a Tribunal?

The Tribunal may summon/ask witnesses to appear before it. If you want a witness to be subpoenaed to appear on your behalf you must ask the RTB at least 10 days before the scheduled hearing date. The Tribunal will consider the subpoena request and, if granted, a subpoena will be issued. Witnesses are entitled to the same immunities and privileges as if before the High Court. The Tribunal may direct that a witness be reimbursed all or part of his/her reasonable expenses in attending before the Tribunal – and, if so, usually to be paid after such attendance and giving of evidence.