R (Gaskin) v Richmond upon Thames LBC – Arden Chambers

‘The Administrative Court has held that a person who owns, and lets out rooms in, a House in Multiple Occupation (“HMO”) provides a service for the purposes of EU Directive 2006/123/EC (the “Directive”) and the Provision of Services Regulations 2009, SI 2009/2999 (the “Regulations”), and that the HMO licensing scheme under Part 2, Housing Act 2004 is an “authorisation scheme” for the purposes of the Directive and Regulations. The decision of the CJEU in R (Hemming t/a Simply Pleasure) v Westminster CC [2017] 3 WLR 317, therefore applies to the fees that may be charged on a Part 2 licensing application, so that where a local authority demanded payment on application of an upfront fee which covered not merely the costs of processing the application, but also the costs of administering and enforcing the scheme, the fee was unlawful.’

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Arden Chambers, 31st July 2018

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