Thursday, September 9, 2010

Squatban according to lawyer + his offer of help

dear clients, ex-clients, future clients,

As of the first of october 2010, the nationwide squatting ban will be coming into effect. This could mean that quite a lot is going to change concerning squatting actions. Not only is it probable that this law will be used to take action against new squatting actions, chances are quite big that the new law will be used against allready existing squats.
Of major importance is that this law does not only makes it illegal to squat, but it also gives the police the authority to actually evict squats.

If indeed this is what will happen, and if so, in which city or region, and how soon after the first of october, is still completely unclear.

Several Cities have said that they would rather not (completely) cooperate with the enforcement of the new law. However it is very much the question that city counsels will have any power or authority,and/or the possibillity to influence the policy of the police and ministry of justice (openbaar ministerie),and their view on this matter and how the police and O.M. see their own role in this matter is still completely unknown.

What is clear is that if no action is taken to get more clarity,it appears that all squatters should consider themselves outlaws and possibly subject to arrest, eviction and prosecution...

Meanwhile there are still legal possibillities to shave off some of the sharp edges of this new law, and as far as new squatting actions after first october are concerned, these possibillities are mostly based on the legal premise or argument that a irrevocable penal conviction is neccesary to justify eviction, which would take some time and prevent immediate eviction.

As far as existing squats are concerned, the argument is that to apply a new law to existing situations which where legal prior to the passing of the law, is a inpermissable infraction on the constitutional right to have sanctity of the home (huisrecht).

Whether or not a Judge will agree with these interpretations and argumentation, is yet to be seen,from verdicts in future courtcases that squatters will be starting against the state and that will be test-cases, defining how the new law will be used in the future.

to everyone who will be affected by the new regulations, it is wise to inform yourself of the possible consequences it could have for you and your friends,. It would be useful to, possibly with the help of your local or regional KSU (squatters info point), try to find out what is the point of view of the town/city and its police force. Based on this information you could could make a decision on whether or not to start a courtcase against the state, to get clarity on your position (with the risk of waking sleeping dogs,and give them ideas..), or to wait with this untill there are more concrete signs of a threat of eviction (with the risk of not having enough time to legally challenge this...)

Keep in mind that any decision you make on these matters could have consequences for any other squats in your region...

If you would like to represent you and your friends in a (test) courtcase against the state, then please contact me by email as soon as possible.
Also i could get in contact with "the powers that be" in your region to find out if there are any concrete plans to evict squats in general, or your squat in particular.

All strategic considerations you base your decisions on in this matter are up to you, in this i can do no more than play an advisory role.

For the record, i like to say that there are other lawyers that can represent you, i have sent out a mailing to inform other lawyers in holland of the possibillities before mentioned, and included a concept letter for a courtcase against the state.

with friendly greetings

Advokatenkantoor Voor-Recht

Marcel Schuckink Kool

Hoge Zand 21a

2512EK Den Haag

tel. 070-3831616

fax. 070-3456024

openingtimes ma-do 10-16 uur

communication by email preferred

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