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Legal ruling helps family hit by sale & rent woe

The company said it would buy the home, pay off their mortgage and let them rent it back indefinitely.

The Jacksons were convinced, and Repossessions Stopped, who advertised throughout the country in local newspapers, bought the property for £63,000 despite it having a market value of £100,000.

But within two years, in 2007, the Jacksons were threatened with eviction after the company failed to pay the mortgage.

Mr Jackson, of Shrewsbury, said: "We were devastated. We took that option to provide security and safety for our family as we didn’t want to lose the home we had lived in for more than 20 years. But when we were served with the eviction notice we felt as if everything was being stolen from us."

The Jacksons’ case for not being evicted was upheld at Birmingham City Court by His Honour Judge Worster.

Shelter’s principal solicitor John Gallagher said: "This is a huge and important victory for not only the Jackson family but everyone who is tempted by these sale and rent back schemes.

"I would urge anyone having mortgage difficulties to seek independent advice from Shelter, a Citizens Advice Bureau or other debt counselling organisations before contacting these kind of companies."

Shelter and solicitors’ firm Freshfields, Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, who support the charity’s Children’s Legal Service, and barrister Andrew Walker of Maitland Chambers, worked together for much of the case on a pro bono (free of charge) basis.

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