Service occupancy agreement
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About this document
Certain types of employment require that the employee lives either on site or at some other specific place. Such accommodation is called “service occupancy” or sometimes “tied accommodation”. In law, it is either a residential licence with terms tied to the employment contract or an assured tenancy agreement. The later is not the same as an assured shorthold tenancy.
This service occupancy agreement creates a licence. As a result, the employee-licensee cannot claim security of tenure after the employment ends.
To “qualify” as service occupancy, the deal must be:
- You receive no rent
- The occupancy is reasonably necessary to the employee performing his duties adequately
- The contract of employment specifies that he must occupy this accommodation
- The above conditions have not changed between the start of the agreement and the time the law is applied
If you are in any doubt as to whether the employment you have in mind qualifies as a service occupancy, use one of our assured shorthold tenancy agreements. That causes greater administration, but gives certainty to your arrangements.
The advantage of using this document to create a mere licence is that you have complete control over the occupation. If either side wishes to terminate the employment for any reason, the occupation ceases too.
The type of accommodation is not important, and could be a bedroom or a whole detached house.
With the agreement we have included a provision you can add to a contract of employment in which you set down the requirement for your employee to live in accommodation provided by you. This will help you to avoid any claim that the occupancy was not really “required” by the job. Alternatively, you could use our employment contract that already includes service occupancy provisions.
When to use this agreement
Types of employment that might require the employee to live in a specific place designated by the employer include:
- Live-in nanny, house keeper or carer
- Hotel staff
- Security staff
- Care takers
- Grounds and estate staff
- Teachers at boarding schools
Members of the armed forces and agricultural workers are also often service occupiers, but different rules may apply from those set out here.
Document features and contents
- Includes sensible, practical provisions to protect the landlord’s interests
- Full description of the property and the services that the employee should expect to receive in residence
- A ‘menu’ of nearly 50 provisions determining what employer may or may not allow the employee to do in the property
- Rent period and amount
- Provision for the occupier’s rights and restrictions when the property occupied is part of a large complex such as a school or industrial buildings.
Provision has also been made for the employer to move the employee to different accommodation if required or to terminate the licence if the requirements of the job change so that living close is no longer required.
Extra to the document is a draft paragraph which can be added to any contract of employment to confirm the proposed arrangement for service occupancy. Use that too, to make sure there is no doubt as to the status of the arrangement.
This document was written by a solicitor for Net Lawman. It complies with current English law.
What other customers thought
Average customer rating
By Alastair Hall 09 March 2018
I used the Service Occupancy Agreement with the associated employment contract for a domestic housekeeper/groundsman post. As Microsoft WORD documents they are easy to amend, and all the decimal numbering and headings adjust automatically. As a surveyor rather than a solicitor, I can't comment on the legal side, but the documents look professionally prepared.
By Matt Bonass 29 August 2017
I am a lawyer but no experience at all in this area so found the draft very helpful - just a few tweaks, and looked good ! Great service
By Richard Wien 18 May 2016
Easy to use website.
Found the document I was looking for very easily.
Amended it without an issue but noted your additional “bespoke” service which looked interesting.
Was surprised that a service like yours existed and would use again.
By Mollie Schofield 18 February 2016
It was a very comprehensive document and only required a few tweaks to make it suit our particular circumstances.
By Helens Carpenter 29 July 2015
I was very happy to have discovered your service when I needed a Service Occupancy Agreement for a live-in member of staff.
The document was excellent and I thought very good value for money.
It enabled me to move an issue forward quickly and easily without having to consult a law firm. I will recommend you to others.
By Otto Hutter 23 February 2014
By Nigel Whittaker 11 August 2013
An Excellent answer to our needs.
By Paul Chenery 28 April 2013
By Marianne Phillips 24 April 2013
The residential occupancy agreement you provided is exactly what we were after. What a bargain - not even £30! I would certainly recommend your services.
By Paula Harding 11 March 2013
Very useful document. Gives me confidence when putting a member of staff into live-in accommodation.
By Alison Rush 14 December 2016
The web site could be a little more clear and concise but overall a very good experience.
By Martyn Thompson 24 March 2013
Thank you, useful document. Have added some more detail.
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