The LLG Grapevine 14th September

Deborah Evans, Dennis Hall and Helen McGrath discuss the EU Withdrawal Agreement, obesity, council audits, The Housing Ombudsman Annual Report, disqualification of non-compliant bids, employment law considerations of working from home, and more. Read more
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  NEWS

Sep 16, 2020

Temporary increase in the notice period for eviction in Wales to be extended

The temporary increase in notice periods for eviction in Wales, including those announced in July, will be extended to 31 March 2021, Housing and Local Government Minister Julie James has announced.
Sep 15, 2020

Councils warn on impact of revised housing formula on levelling-up agenda, rural areas

An updated algorithm designed by government to set how many new homes need to be built in local areas will lead to London and the South seeing a housing boom while swathes of the north will see fewer homes built, the Local Government Association has claimed.
Sep 14, 2020

Housing and property specialist joins Cornerstone Barristers

Housing and property specialist Matthew Feldman has joined Cornerstone Barristers from 42 Bedford Row.
Sep 10, 2020

Ombudsman criticises council which left family in poor accommodation for three years

A disabled father and his family were left in “mouldy, mouse-infested” temporary accommodation, despite Enfield Council accepting it was not suitable for their needs, an investigation by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has found.
Sep 09, 2020

Investment trust flotation aims to raise £250m for housing homeless

An investment firm plans to raise some £250m by floating a real estate investment trust, with the funds used to house homeless people.
Sep 07, 2020

Housing Ombudsman sets out best practice on dealing with complaints from leaseholders and shared owners

The Housing Ombudsman has issued a report containing almost 40 recommendations for dealing with complaints from leaseholders and shared owners.
Sep 03, 2020

Findings of maladministration by Housing Ombudsman edge up in 2019/20

The Housing Ombudsman found full or partial maladministration in 39% of cases determined in 2019/20, up 2% on the previous year, its Annual Report and Accounts have revealed.
Sep 02, 2020

Legal charity receives over £420,000 to expand legal advice clinics in Wales

Legal charity LawWorks has announced it will expand its services in Wales having received a grant of £422,760 from the National Lottery Community Fund.
Sep 01, 2020

Scheme handing Housing Ombudsman new powers goes live

New powers in the revised Housing Ombudsman Scheme that takes effect from today (1 September) will help improve awareness, accessibility and speed of complaint resolution, it has been claimed.
Sep 01, 2020

Welsh social landlord appoints council and eight firms to £4.2m legal services framework

Social landlord Cartrefi Conwy, which has more than 3,800 properties throughout the county of Conwy in North Wales, has appointed its local authority and eight law firms to a legal services framework estimated to be worth £4.2m.

  FEATURES AND ANALYSIS

September 10, 2020

Possession Notices – all change once more!

Alex Loxton sets out the government's proposed changes to the notice periods to be given to tenants when seeking possession of a property.
September 10, 2020

Homelessness application: Interim relief, suitability and housing benefit

Clare Cullen considers a recent High Court decision to adjourn a case considering the suitability of interim accommodation where further information was required.
August 31, 2020

Housing Case Law Update - August 2020

Christopher Skinner, Helen Gascoigne and Elena-Lucia Stoian discuss important new housing law cases from June and July 2020.
August 27, 2020

Freehold enfranchisement and local authorities

If the recent Law Commission proposals for the reform of freehold enfranchisement become law, it will be the first significant change in residential leasehold law for nearly 20 years. V. Charles Ward analyses the potential impact on councils.
August 27, 2020

Housing with Care and use classes

Has the High Court ended the 'Housing with Care' Use Class debate? asks Rachael Herbert.
August 27, 2020

Section 106 agreements and outline and s.73 planning permissions

The High Court has considered whether, following an outline planning permission for housing subject to a s106 agreement, section 73 permissions for essentially the same development were bound by the agreement. Christopher Lockhart-Mummery QC analyses the judgment.
August 26, 2020

Commercial Property and Property Litigation

Helen Marsh and Laura Hallett Lea discuss the challenges that tenants and landlords face as a result of COVID-19. They cover concessions, tenant break clauses and new lease following service of a break notice.
August 24, 2020

The 11th hour extension to the possession claim stay

Andy Lane and Tara O’Leary consider the late changes announced by the Government to extend the stay of possession claims beyond the 23 August deadline.

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  MORE NEWS

Aug 31, 2020

Court of Appeal agrees to hear case on how homelessness applicants should proceed with challenges

The Court of Appeal has granted permission for an appeal in a case that is said to raise an important point of legal principle relating to homelessness appeals.
Aug 27, 2020

Council to pay £1,700+ after London man housed in Birmingham forced to give up job

Merton Council has agreed to pay more than £1,700 in compensation to a man who had to give up one of his jobs because the authority gave him accommodation in Birmingham – leaving him with a three-hour commute.
Aug 27, 2020

Council loses appeal over £200 confiscation order in housing case when benefit said to be several hundreds of thousands of pounds

The London Borough of Islington has lost “a most unusual” Court of Appeal action in which it argued that a confiscation order in a housing overcrowding case was too lenient.
Aug 24, 2020

Council secures permission for appeal over secure flexible tenancies and possession during fixed term

The Court of Appeal has granted the London Borough of Croydon permission to appeal a High Court ruling on secure flexible tenancies and possession during fixed term, it has been reported.
Aug 24, 2020

Housing association to procure £10m legal services panel

A housing association with more than 28,000 homes across the North West, Yorkshire and the Midlands is to procure a legal services framework worth an estimated £10m.
Aug 21, 2020

Eviction ban extended by four weeks

The ban on tenant evictions, which was set to expire on Monday 23rd August, has been extended for a further four weeks until 20th September.
Aug 21, 2020

Councils warn of “cliff edge” with 500,000 people at risk of eviction once stay on proceedings is lifted

Councils have warned that hundreds of thousands of people could be at risk of eviction when the stay on possession proceedings introduced during the COVID-19 pandemic comes to an end on 23 August.
Aug 19, 2020

Police and council secure closure order of residential property where 200 people had gathered

Greater Manchester Police and Manchester City Council have obtained a three-month closure order of a residential property where 200 people had gathered.
Aug 13, 2020

High Court judge remits Leeds site allocations plan to inspectors for reconsideration

The High Court has remitted Leeds City Council’s site allocations plan to the Secretary of State For Housing, Communities and Local Government for reconsideration by planning inspectors, despite both the minister and the council opposing this course of action.
Aug 11, 2020

Supreme Court refuses permission to appeal in challenge over succession to secure council tenancies

The Supreme Court has refused permission to appeal in a legal challenge over the rules relating to the succession to secure council tenancies, it has been reported.
Aug 11, 2020

NW social landlord appoints Trowers to provide regulatory compliance and governance services

First Choice Homes Oldham has appointed law firm Trowers & Hamlins to provide regulatory compliance and governance services worth an estimated £300,000.
Aug 07, 2020

South Yorkshire Housing Association names 13 firms to £1.75m legal services panel

South Yorkshire Housing Association has appointed 13 law firms to a legal services panel worth an estimated £1.75m.
Aug 05, 2020

Housing Ombudsman sees rise in percentage of complaints relating to tenant behaviour

Complaints about tenant behaviour received by the Housing Ombudsman between April and June this year amounted to 21% of the total compared to 12% for the same period in 2019, it has been revealed.
Aug 03, 2020

Law firms advise Welsh housing association on private placement and revolving credit facility

Law firms Devonshires and Clarke Willmott have advised Cadwyn Housing Association on securing a £41m, 35-year, private placement and £21M revolving credit facility.
Jul 29, 2020

High Court judge rejects challenge to £317 hourly rate allowed for council lawyers in housing dispute

A High Court has rejected a challenge to the Supreme Court costs office’s suggested rate of £317 an hour for assessing lawyers’ time in costs awards even though a freedom of information request submitted by the unsuccessful claimant revealed that it is 7.5 times more than the London Borough of Camden pays its legal staff.
Jul 28, 2020

District council wins legal battle after planning inspector miscalculated its housing land supply

East Cambridgeshire District Council earlier this month won a legal challenge against the Planning Inspectorate, who conceded that a planning inspector had miscalculated the authority's housing land supply.
Jul 27, 2020

Landlord who converted house in 12 flats loses appeal over £500k+ confiscation order

A defendant who turned a house into 12 flats without planning permission has lost an appeal over the subsequent imposition of a confiscation order for more than £500,000.
Jul 22, 2020

Independent report finds homes created under PDR offer worse residential environments

Homes created under permitted development rights (PDR) conversions offer worse residential environments than those converted under normal planning permission, research for the Government has found.
Jul 22, 2020

Developer loses High Court battle over planning consent after council admitted failure to give adequate reasons

Bath and North East Somerset Council should have given adequate reasons when it allowed a development against officer’s recommendations, the High Court has found.
Jul 21, 2020

Planning shake-up begins with laws allowing demolition of unused buildings for new homes, and homeowners to build two additional storeys

The Government has laid laws in Parliament today (21 July 2020) that will mean full planning applications will not be required to demolish and rebuild unused buildings as homes.
Jul 20, 2020

Home Office issues guidance on ‘Community Trigger’ ASB case reviews

The Home Office has published guidance on the anti-social behaviour case review – also known as the “Community Trigger”.
Jul 19, 2020

Government sets out arrangements for resumption of possession proceedings in August

Legislation has been laid before Parliament setting out arrangements for managing the resumption of possession proceedings next month.
Jul 16, 2020

Council secures reinstatement of part of penalty for failure to licence HMO

Thurrock Council has gained a partial victory in an Upper Tribunal (Lands Chamber) concerning the penalty for failing to licence a house in multiple occupation (HMO).
Jul 15, 2020

Ombudsman highlights council failings in relation to homelessness reduction legislation

Failures to meet new housing duties on councils have worsened the plight of some homeless people, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has found.
Jul 15, 2020

Trowers & Hamlins advises on social housing SONIA facility first

Trowers & Hamlins has advised Coastline Housing on its first SONIA based loan facility from Lloyds, which the law firm said was believed to be the first day one SONIA (Sterling Overnight Index Average) facility in the social housing sector.

  MORE FEATURES

August 21, 2020

Obtaining possession of a secure tenancy

The following LexisNexis Local Government guidance note, produced in partnership with Karl King of Hardwicke Chambers, provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering the grounds on which and steps required to obtain possession of a secure tenancy.
August 20, 2020

Anti-social behaviour, rough sleeping and injunctions

In a rare occurrence, North Lincolnshire Council recently secured an injunction pursuant to the Anti-social behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 in respect of two rough sleepers. The powers under section 1 of the Act tend to be used exceptionally and many Courts are unfamiliar with them, writes Ben Williams.
August 13, 2020

Act fast to take advantage of the Green Homes Grant

Last week the Government announced the inclusion of local authorities in England within the scope of applicants for the Green Homes Grant. Nathan Bradberry and Maxim Laithwaite discuss how local authorities can get the most out of the scheme.
August 13, 2020

Possession claims after the stay is lifted

Andy Lane explains and provides an overview of the post-23 August 2020 landscape for residential possession claims.
August 06, 2020

Departing from the standard method

The Court of Appeal has recently issued a judgment covering the tilted balance, settlement boundaries and the standard method for calculating objectively assessed housing need. Howard Leithead sets out the key points.
July 28, 2020

The End is in Sight – but what then?

The government has set out how possession proceedings will be dealt with once the stay ends next month. Jane Talbot looks at the proposed approach and the issues that could arise.
July 28, 2020

Draft Building Safety Bill Published

The Government has published draft legislation that it says will provide the “biggest improvements to building safety in nearly 40 years”. Jonathan Turner and Louise Robling look at the key points.
July 28, 2020

Stock Transfer RPs and the use of mandatory ground 7A

Yetunde Dania analyses a recent housing law case which, she says, will be a source of comfort to Large Scale Voluntary Transfer (LSVT) registered providers of social housing when they are seeking to recover possession based on ground 7A.
July 28, 2020

Renegotiating LSVT sharing agreements

We are seeing a steady stream of stock transfer housing associations re-negotiate their historic sharing agreements that originally formed part of their transfer agreement. Rob Beiley looks at the opportunities this presents.
July 28, 2020

Wholesale reform for residential leaseholders

Following the Law Commission's report on the valuation aspects of enfranchisement rights in January, the Commission has now published its recommendations as to what enfranchisement rights should be. William Bethune looks at what the law reform body has to say.
July 28, 2020

Access all areas: facilities rights are a big deal

Roy Pinnock and Amy Carter look at the thorny issue of access to facilities in larger schemes.
July 28, 2020

Helping Registered Providers raise funds quickly and efficiently in challenging times

The current pandemic has demonstrated not only the volatility of the financial markets but also the resilience and attractiveness of social housing as a safe haven for investors. David Moore, Louise Leaver and Deborah Rowntree discuss how registered providers can get the most out of the shift towards social housing.
July 28, 2020

Upper Tribunal revisits "What is an HMO?"

It is vital that landlords, tenants and local authorities all understand when a property should properly be classed as a House in Multiple Occupation (“HMO”). Christopher Hoskins outlines a recent Upper Tribunal case which revisited this issue as it affects blocks of self-contained flats.
July 28, 2020

Housing case law update: July 2020

Paul Lloyd, Sarah Christy and Catherine Craven round up the latest housing law cases from the county court to the Court of Appeal.
July 28, 2020

Landlord licensing in Wales

Must a landlord in Wales be licensed to serve a notice under section 8 of the Housing Act 1988? Justin Bates and Kimberley Ziya report on an important Court of Appeal ruling.
July 23, 2020

Varying and enforcing s106 obligations Part 5: Money claims and ADR

In the fifth and final article in Landmark Chambers’ series on varying and enforcing s. 106 obligations, James Maurici QC, Kate Olley, Heather Sargent, Matthew Henderson and Nick Grant mop up some miscellaneous matters by looking at money claims and other dispute resolution.
July 16, 2020

Deliverability and calculation of a five-year housing land supply

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) definition of ‘deliverable’ is not a closed list, explains Josef Cannon.
July 16, 2020

Lifting the stay

A County Court judge has been persuaded to use its discretion to lift the general stay on possession cases in order to enable a claim to be finalised. Anya Newman explains why.
July 15, 2020

Should I stay or should I go?

James Castle considers whether the automatic stay on possessions imposed by CPR PD 51Z applies to appeals to possession orders in the light of the Court of Appeal decision in London Borough of Hackney v Okoro [2020] EWCA Civ 681.
July 09, 2020

COVID-19, homelessness and rough sleepers: how to help persons ineligible for support

Tara O'Leary looks at what legal powers local authorities will have to deal with rough sleepers once lockdown ends.