Who IS allowed to break into your house

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by CharlieBubbles, Feb 26, 2008.

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  1. While David Houghton and Abby Simpson were on holiday, someone broke into their home - and all they took was their old gas meter. British Gas, they discovered, had hired a locksmith to gain entry to their flat in north London and changed their old meter to a pay-as-you-go version, because the company - mistakenly - believed the couple owed them money.

    It may sound suprising, but according to a 2007 report by Harry Snook, a barrister for the Centre for Policy Studies, there are 266 powers allowing officials to enter your home, and not all require a warrant. Those who can break in include firefighters, in an emergency, and police arresting a suspect. The Environment Agency can gain access without a warrant where there is danger of pollution or damage to public health.

    Electricity and gas companies can come in to inspect equipment or change a meter but have to give at least two days' notice (though they can enter in an emergency).

    Landlords are allowed to enter their property and seize goods in lieu of unpaid rent, and local authorities can enter your home for a number of reasons, including to turn off a continuous burglar alarm or pest extermination.

    Police need warrants to enter if they suspect you have been making biological weapons, fertilising human eggs or running a tattoo parlour at home. Bailiffs are not allowed to break in; however, once they have gained "peaceful entry" (this can be through an open window), they are allowed to come back at any time and force entry.

    Then there are the more unusual Acts. Under the Bees Act, officers can enter to search for foreign bees. Under the Hypnotism Act, the police can enter a property where they suspect offences related to stage hypnotism are taking place. Stage hypnotism, strangely, is not an offence in itself.
     
  2. I'm allowed in. I come in through the balcony. Usually first.
     
  3. oldbaldy

    oldbaldy LE Moderator Good Egg (charities)
    1. Battlefield Tours

    You'd have to squeeze past me.
     
  4. F***ing hell, there are loads of organizations that can get permission to break into your house, the utility companies, the council, plod, customs, revenue, bailiffs, the government departments. I believe there was a list in the national newspapers recently and it was about 30 different organization, AND THAT'S THE LEGAL ONES.

    Add to that squatters, burglars, gippos, chavs, the wife, and it is endless
     
  5. Surely British Gas entrered the property unlawfully 1/ they did not have the property owners consent 2/ there was no court order/warrant issued by the courts.

    This just shows how the big companies treat their customers with utter comptempt.

    This must be the best case of corporate breaking and entering!!


    Stilts
     
  6. Anyone is allowed to break into my house. Just so long as they don't mind two dogs biting chunks out of them once they are inside! :wink:
     
  7. Whether it was lawful or not for them to break in, they are lucky the home owners did not call the plod and allege theft of various items. Hard to prove you didnt steal something when you have already admitted entering the premesis without the presence of or permission from the homeowner/tenant.
     
  8. Does that mean that I am free, as a sadomasochist, to leave my beds of nails under the inside of all of my windows and as a result of my hobby of DIY I can have all the floor boards just inside my door removed and replaced with exposed electrical cables that I just happened to be re-wiring?

    And the roof leading up to the window above my porch? I never did get around to fixing those tiles in place...

    A utility company can feel free to gain entry to my house, just so long as they don't try to sue me when they injure themselves.
     
  9. As a few recent court cases have proved, if somebody gains illiegal entry in to your property and hurts them self, they have every right to sue you for not making your house safe enough for the toerags.
     
  10. I caught two of these feckers inside my property in 1992. They broke in forcing a security chain after they had picked the locks. This, strangely, had not alerted them to the fact we were in, sleeping off the effects of very heavy jetlag.

    Once alerted to their intrusion and concluding they were up to no good I got dressed and made my way downstairs whilst Mrs Boots called 999. Full marks to the Plod who arrived in under 2 minutes (Mrs Boots using the phrase "persons at risk" may have done the trick) giving me just enough time to floor one of the intruders and put him in a gooseneck. I conveyed my intention to break his arm should he or his mate make any attempt to resist or escape.

    Turns out the two gentlemen were from the Electricity Board but had got the wrong address - they wanted flat 2 at number 12, we lived at number 2. They were arrested for breaking and entering but were soon released without charge.

    I had a solicitor send off a letter before action to the Electricity Board which resulted in a more than reasonable offer of compensation for the damage and distress caused. Result.
     
  11. er, don't alot of people do this in their home?

    Do the police want the warrant so they can watch??
     
  12. Welcome to gestapo Britain 2008.

    Labour are authorising more and more organisations to be able to enter your home(council valation surveyers(or whatever they are called)are one of the latest groups to be given rights to enter your home,to see if the value of said home is higher than the council estimated,so the council can jack up your council tax some more).

    While at the same time enshrining the human rights of the criminals.
     
  13. Actually Bailiffs, are NOT allowed to break into your home, they can only get in through open windows, doors etc... but they definately cannot 'break-in', so if nothing is open, they can't break-in, you can also refuse entry if you want, they have no 'legal' right to come in.

    Bailiffs can break in to business premises, certainly not residential.
     
  14. The customs and excise have some pretty scary powers in this area too. They need less proof than the police.