One Source Dec 19 Deputy Director

Tower Hamlets Dec 19 Updated 600

Climate emergency #4: have you thought about Retrofitting?

Maxim Laithwaite, David Hutton and Nathan Bradberry analyse how local authorities and registered providers can use retrofitting to help deliver on climate emergencies. Read more
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Dec 11, 2019

Midlands housing group to set up £7.5m legal services framework

Midland Heart has begun the procurement of a legal services framework worth an estimated £7.5m.
Dec 10, 2019

Borough council sees off statutory challenges to adoption of Local Plan

A Planning Court judge has rejected s.113 statutory challenges brought by two parish councils and a local resident against Guildford Borough Council’s adoption of its Local Plan.
Dec 09, 2019

Supreme Court to hear appeal over arrangements by housing association to allocate properties only to members of religious community

The Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal over whether a charitable housing association’s arrangements for allocating housing, which amount to direct discrimination on the ground of religion, were lawful.
Dec 04, 2019

Court of Appeal rules as "academic" proceedings on discretionary housing payments and contributions

The Court of Appeal had dismissed as academic a case brought against the London Borough of Islington over its discretionary housing payments (DHP) policy and a requirement for a claimant to make a contribution to a shortfall in rent.
Dec 04, 2019

Council obtains injunction to secure affordable housing provision on development site

Shropshire Council has obtained an injunction to secure affordable housing provision on a housing development site, it has been reported.
Dec 02, 2019

Councils and housing associations "face multi-million pound refunds to tenants" after water re-selling test case in High Court

Local authorities and housing associations could face having to refund millions of pounds to tenants after a council lost a test case in the High Court on water re-selling, it has been claimed.
Dec 02, 2019

Council secures £400k+ confiscation order against landlord over house in multiple occupation with 15 tenants

Joint action by Hillingdon Council’s planning enforcement and trading standards teams has seen a Hayes landlord ordered to pay more than £430,000 after she turned her property into an illegal House in Multiple Occupation (HMO).
Nov 29, 2019

Council submits £130m claims in High Court bid to recover costs under housing estate maintenance PFI

Camden Council has submitted claims to the High Court to recover costs from the contractor PFIC (Partners for Improvement in Camden) and its principal subcontractors, who previously had responsibility for refurbishment and maintenance of the Chalcots Estate, under a private finance initiative agreement.
Nov 28, 2019

Resident fails in Court of Appeal challenge to anti-social behaviour injunction

A resident of a housing association in London has failed in a Court of Appeal challenge over an injunction restraining him from committing anti-social behaviour.
Nov 27, 2019

Battle over Cabinet decision to retro-fit sprinkler systems on tower blocks at cost of £19m heads to Court of Appeal

The Court of Appeal has given a local resident permission to appeal a High Court ruling on the lawfulness of a decision by the Cabinet at Birmingham City Council to fund – at a cost of £19m – the retro-fitting of sprinkler systems to all the tower blocks it owns.
Nov 27, 2019

Council planning board removes clause from s106 agreement restricting future occupants from bringing claims over noise after receiving advice move was unlawful

­­The Planning Board at the Royal Borough of Greenwich has removed a clause from a s106 agreement that was intended to restrict future occupants of a housing development from pursuing claims for nuisance or damages over noise, after receiving legal advice suggesting it was unlawful.
Nov 26, 2019

Camden Council obtains first rogue landlord banning order in London

Camden Council is reported to have obtained London’s first rogue landlord banning order against a man who repeatedly placed tenants’ lives at risk through letting unsafe housing.


December 06, 2019

Climate emergency #3: have you thought about New Housing?

In the latest of a series of articles on how local authorities can respond to a climate emergency, Maxim Laithwaite and David Hutton consider the opportunities provided by new housing?
December 05, 2019

Assignment and succession of tenancy

Morayo Fagborun Bennett looks at the circumstances in which social housing tenancies can be transferred to another tenant.
November 29, 2019

Powers to control anti-social behaviour under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014

This guidance note provides a comprehensive and up to date overview of powers to control anti-social behaviour under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, Reform of anti-social behaviour powers (2014), Part 1 Civil Injunctions and Part 2 Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO).
November 15, 2019

Objectively assessed need within the Local Plan process

The Court of Appeal has dismissed legal challenges to the Waverley Local Plan. Wayne Beglan explains why.
November 14, 2019

Housing case law update: succession rules, 'vulnerable persons' and what constitutes suitable accommodation

From succession rules to paying upfront for remedial work, Christopher Skinner, Natalie Hurst and Victoria Smith round up the latest housing law cases.
November 14, 2019

Spent convictions, underlying conduct and the 'fit and proper person' test

James Findlay QC and Riccardo Calzavara report on an Upper Tribunal ruling on spent convictions and the ‘fit and proper person’ test for holding a property licence under the Housing Act 2004.
November 14, 2019

Is an old version of the prescribed section 8 notice still useable?

Michael Grant discusses a recent County Court case concerning service of an outdated version of the prescribed Section 8 notice.
November 14, 2019

Social housing restrictions – is Homes England consent required or not?

Tanya Edmonds looks at the uncertainty around Land Registry restrictions when social housing providers dispose of land.
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Nov 22, 2019

Court of Appeal rejects appeal by council over timing for review of suitability of accommodation where offer had been accepted

The Court of Appeal has said that where a homeless applicant had accepted the accommodation offered, a council conducting a subsequent review under s.202 of the Housing Act 1996 was required to reconsider its decision to secure accommodation outside the local authority's area in the light of all material circumstances at the date of the review, not that of the original decision.
Nov 22, 2019

Council in breach of Home Standard for fire and electrical safety, regulator finds

Runnymede Borough Council has breached the Home Standard for fire and electrical safety, the Regulator for Social Housing has said.
Nov 18, 2019

Solicitor and ex-councillor of London borough jailed for housing fraud

A solicitor and former councillor has been sentenced to serve 16 months in custody after pleading guilty to two counts of fraud.
Nov 13, 2019

Supreme Court finds tribunals and local authorities must disapply bedroom tax to avoid human rights breaches

The Supreme Court has held that social security tribunals and local authorities have the power or duty to calculate entitlement to housing benefit without making deductions for under-occupancy, so as not to violate a claimant’s rights under the European Convention on Human Rights.
Nov 13, 2019

Housing watchdog looks to introduce new Rent Standard from April 2020

A new Rent Standard is set to be introduced from 1 April 2020 after the Regulator of Social Housing (RSH) published its response to a consultation on its proposals.
Nov 13, 2019

Law firm acts for West Midlands social housing group on £600m corporate finance restructuring

The banking and securitisation teams at law firm Devonshires have advised one of the largest social housing providers in the West Midlands on a £600m restructure of its corporate financing.
Nov 12, 2019

Kent housing association seeks legal services provider to advise on moving valuation basis for stock

A profit for purpose housing association in Kent is seeking tenders for the provision of legal advice and due diligence in respect of moving to MV-STT (market-value – subject to tenancy) valuation basis for its LSVT (large scale voluntary transfer) housing stock.
Nov 07, 2019

Supreme Court to rule on ability of tribunals to calculate entitlement to housing benefit without deducting for under-occupancy

The Supreme Court will next week hand down a ruling on whether statutory authorities, including the First-tier Tribunal and Upper Tribunal, have the power or duty to calculate entitlement to housing benefit without making deductions for under-occupancy, so as not to violate a claimant’s rights under the European Convention on Human Rights.
Nov 07, 2019

London borough fails in Upper Tribunal appeal over services charges and heating system renovation

The London Borough of Southwark has lost a case in the Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) over whether it can impose service charges on leaseholders on an estate where the heating system pipework has been renovated.
Nov 07, 2019

Court of Appeal rules planning inspector went beyond her powers in section 73 TCPA case

A planning inspector exceeded her powers in a case concerning permission for wind turbines, the Court of Appeal has ruled.
Nov 06, 2019

Upper Tribunal rules on spent convictions and 'fit and proper person' test for property licence applications

The Upper Tribunal has handed down a significant ruling on spent convictions and the ‘fit and proper person’ test for holding a property licence under the Housing Act 2004.
Nov 05, 2019

Greater Manchester woman given suspended jail sentence over attempted £37k Right to Buy fraud

A woman from Greater Manchester who made a fraudulent Right to Buy application has been given a suspended jail sentence.
Nov 05, 2019

High Court judge to hear legal challenges to adoption of Local Plan by Guildford Borough Council

A Planning Court judge is this week hearing section 113 challenges to Guildford Borough Council’s Local Plan.
Nov 04, 2019

Borough council wins Court of Appeal battle over Local Plan and objectively assessed need

The Court of Appeal has dismissed legal challenges brought by campaign groups over Waverley Borough Council’s Local Plan Part 1 and the inspector's approach to unmet housing need.
Nov 01, 2019

London borough defeats Court of Appeal challenge over succession rules

The London Borough of Haringey has successfully defended a Court of Appeal challenge over the rules relating to the succession to secure council tenancies.
Nov 01, 2019

Landlord ordered to pay £25k+ over unsafe, unlicensed HMOs

A landlord who operated five unlicensed houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) has been ordered to pay more than £25,000 after a prosecution by the London Borough of Redbridge.
Oct 30, 2019

Appellant loses High Court challenge over ruling that she was out of time to bring homelessness appeal

A woman who travelled to Mauritius to see her father after he had suffered a stroke has lost her appeal against an order by a County Court judge refusing her application for permission to bring an appeal out of time over a council’s decision that it had discharged its housing duty.
Oct 30, 2019

Confusion over roles of council and tenant management organisation led to ineffective response to Grenfell fire, inquiry finds

The Royal Borough of Kensington & Chelsea was not told of the major incident at Grenfell Tower for more than an hour after emergency services declared it, and confusion over the roles of the council and its tenant management organisation (TMO) meant neither responded effectively.
Oct 30, 2019

Scottish housing association names two firms to £375k legal services framework

A housing association in the Scottish Borders has appointed two law firms to a legal services framework worth an estimated £375,000.
Oct 30, 2019

Legal Aid Agency to offer contract for housing and debt telephone legal advice services

The Legal Aid Agency (LAA) has begun the procurement of a three-year contract for housing and debt telephone advice services in England and Wales.
Oct 29, 2019

Chancery Division of High Court hears battle between council and tenant over water agreements and ‘re-selling’

The High Court is this week hearing a test case that will consider whether local authorities and housing associations have acted lawfully in failing to pass on to their tenants any discount or commission agreed with water companies.
Oct 29, 2019

Government revises housing delivery test result after council brings High Court legal action

The Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has revised its Housing Delivery Test result for Lewes District Council following a successful legal challenge by the local authority.
Oct 28, 2019

Property owners fail in challenge to refusal by tribunal to hear appeal over financial penalties for unlicensed HMOs

The Upper Tribunal has rejected an appeal by two property owners over the First-Tier Tribunal’s refusal to consider an appeal brought out of time against financial penalties imposed on them by a London borough for running unlicensed houses in multiple occupation (HMOs).
Oct 25, 2019

ECHR finds ‘bedroom tax’ discriminates against victims of domestic violence

The so-called ‘bedroom tax’ unlawfully discriminates against vulnerable victims of domestic violence, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ruled.
Oct 25, 2019

Scottish housing association appoints three law firms to £840k legal services panel

A Scottish housing association has named three law firms to a legal services framework worth an estimated £840,000 over four years.
Oct 24, 2019

High Court judge finds council was right to tell failed asylum seeker to obtain support from Home Office

The London Borough of Southwark acted correctly when it told a failed asylum seeker that he must apply to the Home Office for support.
Oct 24, 2019

London borough wins High Court challenge to decision by inspection on enforcement action over conversion of office basement

The London Borough of Islington has convinced the High Court to overturn a planning inspector’s ruling that it could not take enforcement action against an estate agent who had turned an office basement into a dwelling without planning permission.
Oct 23, 2019

Risks facing social housing sector on the rise, warns regulator

Strategic and operational risks facing the social housing sector are on the rise, the Regulator of Social Housing’s Sector risk profile 2019 has suggested.
Oct 23, 2019

Court of Appeal quashes homelessness review decision over failure to address issue of mental health properly

The Court of Appeal has quashed a decision by a London borough that a 23-year-old man with physical and mental health issues did not have a priority need for homelessness accommodation.
Oct 22, 2019

Woman with involuntary vocalising medical condition given permission to bring judicial review over noise abatement notice

The High Court has granted a woman who suffers from a medical condition which results in her involuntarily vocalising sounds, words or phrases permission to bring a judicial review challenge over a council’s decision to serve her with a noise abatement notice.


November 14, 2019

Collateral warranties – time is of the essence!

Social housing providers should particularly be aware of a recent case in the context of subcontractor and novated consultant warranties in their favour. Zoe Stollard and Priscilla Hall discuss how, without careful drafting, the benefit of a later collateral warranty may expire at the same time as the earlier underlying Building Contract.
November 14, 2019

Homelessness reviews and temporary accommodation

John Murray considers a recent case in which the Court reviewed a London borough's refusal to provide an applicant with temporary accommodation pending an outcome of his s.202 Housing Act 1996 review.
November 14, 2019

The importance of bringing a homelessness appeal in time…

Adrian Davis examines Mr Justice Stewart’s decision in the High Court in which he dismissed an appeal against a county court judge’s refusal to extend time for bringing a homelessness appeal under section 204(2A) of the Housing Act 1996.
November 14, 2019

Housing disrepair, ADR and letters of claim

Elizabeth England examines issues around ADR, the failure to respond to a Letter of Claim and the Pre-Action Protocol for Housing Disrepair claims.
November 08, 2019

Unoccupied properties and immunity from enforcement action

A London borough recently succeeded in an important High Court challenge to the Secretary of State’s approach to immunity from enforcement action. Charles Streeten explains why.
November 01, 2019

Social care support and persons subject to immigration control

The Administrative Court has revisited the issue of the denial of social care support to persons subject to immigration control, and the line between local authority social care support under the Care Act 2014, and accommodation and support provided by the Home Office. Jonathan Auburn analyses the ruling.
November 01, 2019

Taking into account the impacts and benefits of deliverable schemes

The High Court has allowed a statutory challenge against the Secretary of State’s dismissal of an appeal in relation to a 1,200 dwelling scheme. Christopher Lockhart-Mummery QC and Heather Sargent explain why.
November 01, 2019

Disability benefits, "income" and affordability

The Court of Appeal has provided clarification about the status of disability benefits in affordability cases, writes Matt Lewin.
October 29, 2019

Retrofitting social housing

Retrofit social housing is crucial to meet zero net emission targets. Nathan Bradberry explains what this opportunity involves for local authorities and registered providers.
October 29, 2019

Councils managing stock owned by registered providers

Would it make sense for councils to manage registered providers' stock? Jonathan Jarvis looks at the opportunities presented by such arrangements, and explains how the hurdles can be overcome.
October 29, 2019

Housing case law update: personal circumstances, time limits for appealing financial penalties, and transferring HMO licences

Charlotte Rawson and Ian Larkins provide an update on the latest housing law judgments that cover issues including a council's failure properly to consider a homeless man's medical conditions, the time limits for appealing financial penalties imposed under the Housing Act 2004, and whether an HMO licence can be transferred.
October 29, 2019

The PSED and claims for possession

John Murray considers a recent case in which a court scrutinised an alleged breach of the Public Sector Equality Duty in the context of a claim for possession.
October 29, 2019

Private landlords, electrical safety standard and implied terms

The path has been set for a new implied term that electrical safety standards are met. Elizabeth England sets out how the provisions will apply to private landlords and most private registered providers of accommodation.
October 29, 2019

The link between planning and HMO licensing

David Smith comments on a recent change made to the Government's guidance for local housing authorities on houses in multiple occupation (HMOs), concerning the relationship between licensing and planning.
October 25, 2019

Government automated-decision making

Robin Allen QC and Dee Masters, who run the and tweet at @AILawHub, summarise the main points from their recent report on artificial intelligence and automated decision-making in government, warning that some local authorities could be acting in a discriminatory way.
October 18, 2019

What is the latest on five year housing land supply?

Gary Soloman sets out for local authorities and developers the key points from new planning policy guidance and court cases about the interpretation of five year housing land supply within the National Planning Policy Framework.
October 11, 2019

When two become one

Oliver Lawrence analyses a recent High Court judgment on adjacent developments and the need to provide an Environmental Statement.
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October 04, 2019

Exploring the limits of public authority’s liability for children

Duncan Fairgrieve and Jim Duffy, barristers at 1 Crown Office Row, examine the Supreme Court’s decision in Poole Borough Council v GN and another that the respondent local authority did not owe a common law duty of care to exercise its functions under the Children Act 1989 to protect the appellants, who were children of a family which it had housed, from harm at the hands of anti-social…
September 26, 2019

The Housing Year: 12 cases - 2018/9

Andy Lane reviews what he considers to be the most interesting cases in housing law over each of the last 12 months.
September 26, 2019

Flexible tenancy renewal

How can landlords deal with the inflexibilities of the flexible tenancy scheme? Jon Holbrook explains.
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