Notices and statutory nuisances

A recent High Court ruling shows the need to avoid an overly technical approach to s.82(6) notices under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, writes Sarah Salmon. Read more
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May 12, 2021

Councils express concern at potential rise in homeless households as Government confirms ban on bailiff-enforced evictions to end on 31 May

The current ban on bailiff-enforced evictions will end on 31 May, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has confirmed.
May 11, 2021

Housing Ombudsman publishes report on use of complaint handling failure orders

The Housing Ombudsman has published its first report setting out how it has used its new power to issue complaint handling failure orders.
May 10, 2021

Treasury to create £26m fund for councils migrating local land charges service to HM Land Registry

The Treasury is to set up a £26m fund for councils as part of its drive to establish a national Local Land Charges Register.
May 06, 2021

Council to pay housing association £117k after errors lead to cancelled land sale

Lichfield District Council is to pay a housing association compensation of almost £117,000 after errors in a land sale.
May 06, 2021

Allocation scheme unlawfully discriminated against those with disabilities, High Court judge rules

Birmingham City Council’s choice-based process for allocating homes to people with disabilities was discriminatory and therefore unlawful, the High Court has found.
May 03, 2021

Trowers advises social landlord on first ever sustainability-linked private placement for housing association

Law firm Trowers & Hamlins has advised believe housing on an £85m sustainability-linked private placement with Legal and General in what is reported to be a sector first for a housing association.
Apr 30, 2021

Councils to be under new legal duty to provide support to victims as Domestic Abuse Bill receives Royal Assent

Councils will from this summer have a legal duty to provide support such as therapy, advocacy and counselling in safe accommodation, including refuges, to victims of domestic abuse and their children, after the Domestic Abuse Bill this week (29 April) received Royal Assent.
Apr 30, 2021

Government consults on residential developer tax aimed at contributing £2bn to cost of cladding remediation

The Government has launched a consultation on the proposed design of a new tax on the largest residential property developers to help contribute to the cost of cladding remediation work.
Apr 30, 2021

Landlord hit with curfew, £7k compensation and costs bill after unlawful eviction

A landlord has been placed under an overnight curfew in her home and ordered to pay just under £7,000 in compensation and costs after pleading guilty to unlawfully evicting her lodger, in a case brought by Bristol City Council’s Rogue Landlord Unit.
Apr 29, 2021

High Court judge says system of city council for accommodating homeless people is unlawful

Birmingham City Council’s system for allocating accommodation to homeless people has been declared unlawful by the High Court.


May 05, 2021

Housing case law update - April 2021

Christopher Skinner, Rebecca Asady and Filip Bodnar round up the latest judgments of interest to housing associations and local authorities.
April 30, 2021

Rent Repayment Orders: A virtual introductory workshop

Howard Lederman and Natalie Foster of 42 Bedford Row Barristers' Housing Group provide an overview of rent repayments orders as it affects local authorities.
April 23, 2021

Dealing with homelessness appeals

Focussing on section 204 and section 204A appeals in the county court, Catherine Rowlands, Andy Lane, Tara O'Leary and Rowan Clapp look at those appeals through the lens of the local authority respondent.
April 22, 2021

Tower blocks, re-cladding and service charges

Timothy Straker QC, Jonathan Manning and Christopher Baker analyse a Court of Appeal case on service charge liability for re-cladding a tower block.
April 15, 2021

When the wind(fall) blows

Roy Pinnock examines the sweeping Commercial to Residential permitted development right that was trailed in Autumn 2020 and which will come into effect from 1 August 2021.
April 07, 2021

Dealing with Hoarding during the Coronavirus crisis

There has been some focus on the effects of anti-social behaviour upon neighbours but what about cases such as hoarding where the main person affected is the hoarder themselves and the property? Anna Bennett looks at the options.
April 06, 2021

Too much, too soon

A High Court judge recently allowed an appeal against a decision of a Circuit Judge to dismiss a claim that an asylum seeker who had been accommodated by a local authority under the “Everyone In” scheme did not have an arguable case that he had been granted a secure tenancy. Justin Bates explains why.
April 05, 2021

Alternative dispute resolution and the Housing Ombudsman

The Housing Ombudsman has announced plans to publish individual determinations and reports based on complaints that it has reviewed. Matthew Lake examines the proposals.

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Apr 28, 2021

Supreme Court agrees to hear battle over termination of fixed term secure flexible tenancies

The Supreme Court has granted Croydon Council permission to appeal in a dispute over the termination of fixed term secure flexible tenancies.
Apr 26, 2021

Social landlord appoints seven law firms to £5m legal services framework

A housing association with more than 28,000 homes across the North West, Yorkshire and the Midlands, Your Housing, has appointed seven providers to a legal services framework worth an estimated £5m over four years.
Apr 26, 2021

Anthony Collins Solicitors promotes three to partner including head of housing management

The head of the housing management and Right to Buy teams at Anthony Collins Solicitors (ACS) is among three new partners in its latest round of promotions.
Apr 23, 2021

Kent teen left to live in tent during Covid-19 crisis, Ombudsman investigation finds

A Kent teenager was left to sofa surf and live in a tent for almost two months by Medway Council during the COVID-19 pandemic after his family was left homeless, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has found.
Apr 22, 2021

Tenant wins appeal over service of notice as she pursues private prosecution of council over mice infestation

A tenant seeking to bring a private prosecution against a council over a mice infestation has won an appeal over her compliance with the notice requirements of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (EPA).
Apr 21, 2021

Anthony Collins Solicitors appoints housing litigation and management partner

Anthony Collins Solicitors has bolstered its housing litigation and management practice in Manchester with the appointment of a new partner.
Apr 18, 2021

Major Midlands housing association set to award £22m legal services contract

The largest housing association in the Midlands has published a contract notice for a legal services framework worth an estimated £22.4m.
Apr 14, 2021

Ombudsman upholds complaint by landlord over council advising tenants to stay in property after possession order

Brentwood Borough Council has been found by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGSCO) to have caused injustice to a local landlord.
Apr 14, 2021

Landlord ordered to pay £90k+ for safety failings

A prosecution brought by Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council has seen a landlord and his management company ordered to pay more than £90,000 in fines and legal costs over safety failings.
Apr 13, 2021

Bevan Brittan appoints property finance lawyer as partner

National law firm Bevan Brittan has appointed property finance specialist Jessica Church as a partner.
Apr 13, 2021

Law firm advises G15 housing group on partnership deal

Bevan Brittan has advised G15 housing association Catalyst Housing Group on its partnership with Rosebery Housing Association.
Apr 08, 2021

Government issues guidance on Housing Possession Mediation Service

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government has issued guidance on the Housing Possession Mediation Service.
Apr 05, 2021

Campaigners seek oral hearing after refusal of permission for statutory review challenge over adoption of Local Plan

A campaign group has filed a request for an oral hearing after a High Court judge refused permission on the papers for a legal challenge over South Oxfordshire District Council’s decision to proceed with its Local Plan 2035.
Apr 05, 2021

Trowers & Hamlins advises social landlord on strategic partnership with investment firm

Law firm Trowers & Hamlins has advised The Hyde Group on the formation of a strategic partnership with global investment firm M&G, which will lead to the development of £500m new sustainably designed affordable homes.
Apr 05, 2021

Housing Ombudsman forecasts increase in enquiries and complaints during 2021/22 as a result of pandemic

The Housing Ombudsman has predicted that the volume of enquiries and complaints the service receives will continue to rise in 2021/22, and that there will be a growing number of more complex complaints requiring investigation of a landlord’s actions in the light of Covid-19 alongside the complaint itself.
Mar 31, 2021

Claimant wins housing case against council in part but judge rejects anonymity bid

A disabled resident has won part of her housing case against the London Borough of Croydon but failed in a late bid to be made anonymous.
Mar 31, 2021

Leaseholders win battle with City of London over service charges

Leaseholders have won a Court of Appeal case against the City of London Corporation over whether certain repairs to their homes are chargeable to them.
Mar 28, 2021

Judge orders defendant to pay back £90,000 after Right to Buy fraud

A defendant who admitted fraud under the Right to Buy scheme has been ordered to pay back more than £90,000.
Mar 28, 2021

Housing Ombudsman names first Independent Reviewer of Service Complaints

The Housing Ombudsman has appointed a former Chief Legal Ombudsman as its first Independent Reviewer of Service Complaints.
Mar 28, 2021

Housing Ombudsman publishes 'systemic framework' covering how it will deal with wider issues beyond individual disputes

The Housing Ombudsman has published its new ‘systemic framework’ setting out how it will look beyond individual disputes to identify key issues that impact on residents and landlords’ services.
Mar 25, 2021

Court of Appeal hands down ruling in housing case on where authorities issue late reviews

The Court of Appeal has ruled on two points of law that arose over a case where an applicant first wished to establish a local connection with Milton Keynes but later did not.
Mar 22, 2021

Law firms advise social landlords on largest stock swap to date

Law firms Trowers & Hamlins and Devonshires have advised on what is believed to be the affordable housing sector's largest stock swap so far.
Mar 22, 2021

Councils to be given greater flexibility in reforms to use of Right to Buy receipts

Councils in England are to be given more freedom on how they spend the money received from homes sold through Right to Buy, Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has said.
Mar 16, 2021

Trowers & Hamlins advises property investment company on “unique arrangement” to help council meet its housing needs

Law firm Trowers & Hamlins has advised property investment firm Phi Capital Investments Limited (Phi) on a bespoke agreement with Thurrock Council to acquire properties to meet local housing needs.
Mar 15, 2021

High Court judge finds councils have power during pandemic to accommodate rough sleepers with no recourse to public funds

Local authorities have powers during the Covid pandemic to provide accommodation for rough sleepers with no recourse to public funds (NRPF), a High Court judge has ruled.


April 05, 2021

Better late than never: round two

The Court of Appeal has confirmed that where a local authority makes a homelessness review decision late, that decision is valid notwithstanding its lateness, writes Alexander Campbell.
March 30, 2021

Coronavirus (COVID-19) - implications for property

The following Property practice note from LexisNexis provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering the implications for landlords of the Covid-19 pandemic.
March 29, 2021

Housing case law update - March 2021

Paul Lloyd, Helen Gascoigne and Catherine Craven analyse the latest court rulings and Ombudsman investigations of interest to housing associations and local authorities.
March 19, 2021

Development of "isolated homes in the countryside"

The Court of Appeal has handed down an important judgment on “isolated homes” and national heritage policy, writes Melissa Murphy.
March 03, 2021

Social housing: Disrepair masterclass

Jonathan Hulley, Clive Adams, Ian Rattenbury, Will May and Elena Singleton deliver a 'Disrepair Masterclass’, exploring tips, traps and best practice, in addition to reviewing the latest case law.
March 03, 2021

Pressing pause on bankruptcy and possession action under the new Debt Respite (Breathing Space) Scheme

Richard Hanstock and Vicki Hanstock set out the key elements of a forthcoming Government scheme aimed at encouraging people to obtain professional debt advice, and analyse its impact on local authorities and other landlords.
March 02, 2021

The pitfalls of relying on s21 during the pandemic

Master Dagnall recently gave judgment in a case which considered several issues regarding the pandemic and possession proceedings which are worthy of note as the stay on evictions has again been extended, writes Jane Talbot.
March 02, 2021

Homelessness and Allocations – what now post Brexit?

At 11pm on 31 December 2020 (the implementation period (“IP”) completion date) the UK withdrew from the EU. What effect has this had on local authority assessments of eligibility for homelessness applications and allocations made pursuant to Parts 6 and 7 of the Housing Act 1996 (“HA 1996”)? Peggy Etiebet explains.
March 02, 2021

Providing information about anti-social behaviour

In the light of a recent case Melanie Dirom considers a landlord’s duty of care to provide anti-social behaviour and complaints information.
March 02, 2021

Interim accommodation and local connections

Nick Grundy QC and Victoria Osler examine a High Court ruling on when ‘interim accommodation’ does not give rise to a ‘local connection’.
March 02, 2021

Allocation schemes and "preferences"

A Deputy High Court judge recently ruled that a council had misapplied its Allocation Scheme by treating a “preference” given to families with children as an automatic decision in their favour. Tessa Buchanan analyses the ruling.
March 01, 2021

Housing case law update - February 2021

Daniel Skinner, Katrina Robinson and Kirsten Taylor round up the latest court rulings and Ombudsman reports of interest to the housing sector.
February 26, 2021

'Out of date' policies and site-specific considerations

‘Out-of-date’ assessments can be site specific, Mr Justice Holgate has confirmed. Tom Cosgrove QC and Ruchi Parekh analyse the ruling.
February 19, 2021

Extended halt on evictions (again, again): exemption applications; warrants and extensions

Amy Kelly considers the latest extension of the prohibition on enforcement of some possession orders in England and Wales.
February 17, 2021

How enforced sales can help the empty homes crisis

Enforced sales could be an important tactic to help local authorities in their efforts to tackle empty homes, freeing up thousands of empty homes for families in housing need, writes Lyndon Campbell.
February 12, 2021

Planning and Equalities Impact Assessments

John Pugh-Smith and Daniel Kozelko look at the pitfalls of not undertaking equalities impact assessments conscientiously in the planning context.
February 08, 2021

The essential housing update

Louise Leaver leads a discussion with the housing team at Bevan Brittan looking back on some of the important financial and regulatory changes that were overshadowed by the pandemic but that may still impact legal departments in 2021.
February 02, 2021

Incapacious respondents to closure order proceedings: Ealing LBC v M

Siân McGibbon and Joshua Hitchens analyse the subject of incapacious respondents to closure order proceedings following a recent ruling.
February 02, 2021

Terminating flexible tenancies

Anneli Robins analyses the Court of Appeal's ruling in a case where the principal issue was whether a landlord can terminate a fixed term secure flexible tenancy agreement prior to the expiry of the fixed term if no express provision is made in the tenancy agreement for re-entry or forfeiture.
February 02, 2021

Housing case law update - January 2021

Michael Owen, Natalie Hurst and Claire Hogan-Clark round up the latest judgments affecting housing associations and local authorities.