Shmuli (Paul Simon)  Shmuli (Paul Simon)
Senior Consultant Block Management & Leasehold Law Solicitor

Shmuli, as he is affectionately known throughout the Leasehold sector, is an expert in Block Management and Leasehold Law and he has built a niche practice, advising stakeholders on everything from designing developments to drafting leases and from obtaining control of a block's management to challenging service charge.

From 2012 to 2018, Shmuli worked in-house for managing agents and he was integral in the creation of what was the first law firm to boast an ARMA-regulated property management department. With his unique experience of practising law and managing developments, Shmuli is the author of a number of unique products that he created for more efficient and proper management of blocks and developments.

Shmuli is the founder of The Lease Academy and the man behind the Lease Detective brand that is being launched in association with Setfords. The Lease Academy is a Centre of Excellence providing formal and informal learning opportunities to managing agents and RMC directors and publishing articles and case-law updates. At The Lease Academy, Shmuli leads a team of Lease Detectives, who provide initial advice, free-of-charge* to leaseholders, RMC directors and managing agents on anything, from alterations to pets. Rest assured, Shmuli will tell you
The Truth about Cats & Dogs

Shmuli is an expert forensic title analyst and often, his advice is sought, in relation to complex mixed-use developments, including advising ground rent investors on potential transactions and contentious matters. Shmuli litigates in the First-tier Tribunal and in addition to appearing in the High Court, Shmuli has taken cases up to the Court of Appeal.

Shmuli lectures on a range of topics relating to Block Management & Leasehold Law, to peers and stakeholders alike and he contributes to the ever-popular Q&A column in News On The Block.

In the news

The following products and services are some of those that Shmuli can provide:

  • Title Audit
  • Lease Audit
  • Planning (New Schemes)
  • Leases
  • Regulations
  • Management Setup
  • Company Incorporation
  • Education (Directors)
  • Education (Leaseholders)
  • Director Services
  • Co Sec Services
  • Shareholder Solutions
  • Debt Recovery
  • Covenant Enforcement
  • Pre-contract Enquiries
  • Post-completion Matters
  • Management Orders
  • Tribunal Applications
  • Enfranchisement
  • Right To Manage
  • Lease Extensions
  • Deeds of Variation
  • Landlord Consents
  • Shared-ownership
  • Company Restoration
  • Risk Assessment

Some specific examples of experience are:

  • Acted for a Block MANCO to defeat the Section 24 application for a Tribunal-appointed Manager. Subsequently, negotiated deeds of variation of all the leases and revised Block MANCO’s articles of association, to resolve the shareholder dispute.
  • Forensic analysis, on behalf of a substantial ground rent investor, of specific terms of the contractual relationship between the client-freeholder, the residential head-leaseholder (a limited company who also was the freeholder) and the residential leaseholders, that disproved legal opinions provided to the freeholder by three sets of lawyers.
  • Forensic analysis, for an Estate MANCO and the various Block MANCOs of a mixed-use development, to determine the correct service charge percentages for residential leaseholders, commercial leaseholders and car park leaseholders.
  • Acted for a Block MANCO in a High Court dispute about management of a development, in Manchester, where Block MANCO obtained an injunction against the freeholder preventing interference with management of the development. The freeholder’s actions were partly based on advice from its solicitor, who was committed to prison, in 2018, for numerous offences, including production of multiple fraudulent documents, in this case.
  • Acted for a leaseholder in his successful application to the First-tier Tribunal for its appointment of a manager. Six weeks passed from submission of the application to appointment of the manger, making it the fastest appointment, on record, to our knowledge.
  • Acted for an Estate MANCO who was asked to sign certificates of compliance in connection with the transfer of shared-ownership leases that had staircased to 100% and were being sold on the open market. Estate MANCO was not satisfied that there was full compliance and required the freeholder’s confirmation, either of compliance or that Estate MANCO was to be indemnified, if the breaches were ignored. Estate MANCO resisted leaseholder-pressure, pending the freeholder’s decision and therefore was not compromised, when the freeholder, after six months, responded to say that it required 100% compliance and rectification of any defects in the shared-ownership leases.
  • Acted for a group of leaseholders, in West London, to secure the Tribunal appointment of a manager, where the freeholder had neglected her duties. Despite the judge informing me, at the outset, that she was not minded to make ‘such a draconian order’, the management order was obtained, after a two-day hearing. Unfortunately, the freeholder refused to comply with certain terms of the management order and, in October 2015, she was committed to prison for 12 months.

*subject to Terms & Conditions

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