• In the case of Huwyler v Ruddy [1996] 28 HLR 550, the boundary between tenancy and a licence to occupy. It was found that the right of a licensee to services can still be exercised, even if these have not been for a while, but especially if they had been exercised previously.

Facts of Huwyler v Ruddy [1996] 28 HLR 550

  • The C had granted the D a licence to occupy a room in the flat
  • This licence included charges for service, but it was later agreed that the D would do his own cleaning up after he had moved to another room
  • This meant cleaning was provided but was then stopped
  • The C had given notice to D of termination of licence
  • The D then argued that there was not a licence but a lease present instead

Issues in Huwyler v Ruddy [1996] 28 HLR 550

  • Was there a licence, as the C saw, or a lease as the D sought declaration for?

Held by the Court of Appeal

  • Appeal dismissed. The agreement between the two was a licence not a lease, as the C contended.

Lord Justice Peter Gibson

  • The C’s unrestricted access to provide the cleaning service meant that the access was not so trivial as to make the right a sham and allow the court to disregard such
  • For Lord Justice Peter Gibson, there was a clear and obvious inference that the same contractual terms would apply when the D moved from one room to another
  • Having considered the facts, Lord Justice Peter Gibson agreed with the judge previously hearing the case, he did not see a change in the parties’ contractual position after the cleaning had stopped and the D had moved rooms