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Distress Act 1951 [Act 255]

11 Payments by under-tenant or lodger to superior landlord to be deemed rent   cite [+]

For the purposes of the recovery of any sums payable by an under-tenant or lodger to a superior landlord under the undertaking specified in section 10, or under a notice served in accordance with section 14, the under-tenant or lodger shall be deemed to be the immediate tenant of the superior landlord, and the sums payable shall be deemed to be rent; but, where the under-tenant or lodger has, in pursuance of any such undertaking or notice as aforesaid, paid any sums to the superior landlord, he may deduct the amount thereof from any rent due or which may become due from him to his immediate landlord, and any person (other than the tenant for whose rent the distress is levied or authorized to be levied) from whose rent a deduction has been made in respect of such a payment may make the like deductions from any rent due or which may become due from him to his immediate landlord.

12 Exclusion of certain goods   cite [+]

Section 10 shall not apply-

(a) to goods belonging to the husband or wife of the tenant whose rent is in arrear, or to goods comprised in any bill of sale, hire purchase agreement, or settlement made by such tenant, or to goods in the possession, order, or disposition of such tenant by the consent and permission of the true owner under such circumstances that such tenant is the reputed owner thereof;

(b) to goods of a partner of the immediate tenant;

(c) to goods (not being goods of a lodger) upon premises where any trade or business is carried on in which both the immediate tenant and the under-tenant have an interest;

(d) to goods (not being goods of a lodger) on premises used as offices or warehouses where the owner of the goods neglects for one calendar month after notice (which shall be given in like manner as a notice to quit) to remove the goods and vacate the premises; and

(e) to goods belonging to and in the offices of any company or corporation on premises the immediate tenant whereof is a director or officer, or in the employment, of such company or corporation.

13 Exclusion of certain under-tenants   cite [+]

Section 10 shall not apply to any under-tenant where the under tenancy has been created in breach of any covenant or agreement in writing between the landlord and his immediate tenant.

14 To avoid distress   cite [+]

In cases where the rent of the immediate tenant of such superior landlord is in arrear, it shall be lawful for the superior landlord to serve upon any under-tenant or lodger a notice (by registered post addressed to such under-tenant or lodger upon the premises) stating the amount of such arrears of rent, and requiring all future payments of rent, whether the same has already accrued due or not, by such under-tenant or lodger to be made direct to the superior landlord giving such notice until such arrears shall have been duly paid, and such notice shall operate to transfer to the superior landlord the right to recover, receive, and give a discharge for such rent.

15 Interpretation of sections 10 to 14   cite [+]

In and for the purposes of sections 10, 11, 12, 13 and 14 the words "superior landlord" shall be deemed to include a landlord in cases where the goods seized are not those of an under-tenant or lodger; and the words "tenant" and "under-tenant" do not include a lodger.

16 Application by tenant   cite [+]

The tenant may apply to a Judge to discharge or suspend the execution of the warrant, or to release any part of the property seized.

17 Powers of court   cite [+]

The Judge may, on any such application, deal with the matter summarily and dismiss the application or discharge the warrant, or order the release unconditionally or on such terms as he thinks fit of any property seized, or may direct an issue to be tried, and, pending the determination of such issue, suspend the execution of the warrant, or may order the property to be sold and the proceeds of sale to be lodged in court, or may make such other order on such terms as he considers fair as between the parties pending the final determination of the matter.

18 Costs   cite [+]

Any costs incurred in any such proceedings shall be in the discretion of the Judge and may in proper cases be added to the amount leviable under the warrant.

19 Sale of property seized   cite [+]

Subject to this Act the property seized under a warrant of distress shall be sold at the time and place named in the notice required by section 9; and the net proceeds of sale shall be applied first in payment of the bailiff's fees and expenses and then in satisfaction of the rent and costs due by the tenant to the landlord. The balance, if any, remaining over after such payments shall be returned to the tenant or other person entitled thereto.

20 Procedure where property seizable under a distress is already under seizure by way of execution   cite [+]

(1) Where any property liable to be seized under a warrant of distress has already been seized in execution by order of any court, it shall not be seized under the warrant of distress so long as it remains under such seizure; but the officer in possession in execution shall be notified of the warrant of distress, and shall thereupon, subject to any prior claim by or on behalf of the Government of Malaysia or the Government of any State, be liable to pay out of the proceeds of sale of the goods seized by him, after payment thereout of the expenses of the execution and sale, but in priority to any other payment, the amount appearing to be due to the landlord:

Provided that such payment shall not in any case exceed the amount due for the last six months' rent.

(2) The officer in possession under the warrant of execution shall, on being notified as provided in subsection (1), give notice in writing to the execution creditor and the execution debtor of the warrant of distress. Notice to the execution debtor may be given by affixing it to the premises on which the goods were seized.

(3) The execution creditor or the execution debtor may apply to the court to discharge or suspend the warrant of distress, and the court may then exercise all or any of such powers as are provided in sections 17 and 18 in the case of an application under section 16.


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