Not signed, not sealed, not delivered – Nearly Legal

‘A first instance county court judgment on a possession claim, but with a range of interesting issues. The Ratcliffes were the landlords, Ms Patterson was the tenant and Mr Porter a guarantor, who played no part in proceedings. The tenancy was an assured shorthold tenancy with the most recent fixed term beginning in June 2018. Rent arrears accrued (on which more later) and the Ratcliffes brought a claim for possession under grounds 8, 10 and 11 Schedule 2 Housing Act 1988.’

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Nearly Legal, 26th April 2020

Source: nearlylegal.co.uk

Remote hearings and inclusive justice – Transparency Project

‘How effectively are people with a cognitive impairment, mental health condition and/or neuro-diverse condition able to participate in proceedings in the justice system, particularly when they engage with that system via video or telephone link?’

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Transparency Project, 24th April 2020

Source: www.transparencyproject.org.uk

UK voter ID plan disenfranchises the poor, appeal court told – The Guardian

Posted April 24th, 2020 in appeals, documents, elections, equality, identification, news by sally

‘Pilot schemes requiring voters to produce photo ID at polling stations disenfranchise those who do not have or cannot find their documents and alienate people from the democratic process, the court of appeal has been told.’

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The Guardian, 23rd April 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Government successfully appeals in ‘Right to Rent’ case – UK Human Rights Blog

‘Notably, the Court of Appeal agreed with the High Court’s view that the scheme does result in landlords discriminating against tenants without British passports on the basis of their actual or perceived nationality. However, the Court held that this discrimination was justified.’

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UK Human Rights Blog, 22nd April 2020

Source: ukhumanrightsblog.com

EHRC warning on use of video hearings in criminal cases – Legal Futures

‘The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHCR) has called on the government to take action to reduce the risk of disabled people being wrongly convicted because of video hearings in criminal cases.’

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Legal Futures, 24th April 2020

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Resuscitation and the value of a disabled person’s life: Triaging and Covid19 – Cloisters

‘What is your life worth? If you get Covid19, what criteria do you want clinicians to apply when triaging your case? Choices on withholding treatment have become starkly real in the Covid19 emergency. Such choices should be made on a basis respecting the dignity of the individual patient and not based on stereotypes relating to age or disability. The emergent guidance is not clear on these issues.’

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Cloisters, 22nd April 2020

Source: www.cloisters.com

R (Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants) v Secretary of State for the Home Department – Blackstone Chambers

‘The Court of Appeal (Davis, Henderson and Hickinbottom LJJ) has today [21 April] handed down judgment in this case. It has allowed the Secretary of State’s appeal against the High Court’s conclusion that the “right to rent” scheme, set out in sections 20-37 of the Immigration Act 2014, is incompatible with Article 14 ECHR (read with Article 8).’

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Blackstone Chambers, 21st April 2020

Source: www.blackstonechambers.com

Court hearings via video ‘risk unfairness for disabled people’ – The Guardian

‘Remote video trials could disadvantage people with learning disabilities, the equalities watchdog has warned, as courts switch to online hearings during the coronavirus crisis.’

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The Guardian, 22nd April 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Socially distanced courts for the digitally excluded – Transparency Project

Posted April 21st, 2020 in coronavirus, courts, equality, internet, live link evidence, news by sally

‘We have heard a lot about how the courts are responding to the coronavirus pandemic by conducting hearings online instead of in a physical court room. But while hearings by Skype and Zoom enable participants to maintain social distancing and avoid the risks of contagion, they may not work for everyone. Is there another way of delivering justice to the digitally excluded?’

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Transparency Project, 19th April 2020

Source: www.transparencyproject.org.uk

Met to review role of school police officers after legal challenge – The Guardian

‘The Metropolitan police are to review the role of officers in schools after a legal challenge raised concerns that they could have a disproportionately negative effect on pupils from black and minority ethnic groups.’

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The Guardian, 20th April 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Can dismissal for self-isolating be automatically unfair? – St John’s Buildings

Posted April 20th, 2020 in chambers articles, coronavirus, employment, equality, news, unfair dismissal by sally

‘Most of us are now up to speed (as far as possible) with the principle, and maybe practice, of furlough, but one thing that has yet to be tested is the ability of unfair dismissal protection to safeguard employees that are unable to attend or carry out work in line with current guidelines. At one point (specifically, 23.03.2020), there was a proposal to introduce provisions creating an automatic unfair dismissal where that dismissal was for ‘coronavirus-related’ reasons, and where the employer was entitled to reimbursement of statutory sick pay or payment under the coronavirus job retention scheme. That would have been to ensure that businesses being forced to close would also not result in mass job losses when funding to retain those jobs was available as an alternative to dismissal. At the date of writing, that proposal has not progressed, nor is there any other proposal to safeguard employees from any other ‘coronavirus-related’ dismissal. Whilst ordinary unfair dismissal principles will assist those employees with at least two years’ continuous employment, I wanted to consider a couple of options potentially open to employees not qualifying for that protection.’

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St John's Chambers, 16th April 2020

Source: stjohnsbuildings.com

Employee Dismissal Rights when Shielding: An Overview – Doughty Street Chambers

Posted April 20th, 2020 in chambers articles, coronavirus, employment, equality, news, unfair dismissal by sally

‘If your employer dismisses you as a result of you being unable to work due to you being in the shield group then you may have a claim for automatic unfair dismissal under s100(1)(d) or (e) of the Employment Rights Act 1996 (“ERA”), no minimum qualifying period of employment is required to bring this claim.’

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Doughty Street Chambers, 14th April 2020

Source: insights.doughtystreet.co.uk

Equality and discrimination in employment during the COVID-19 Pandemic – 3PB

Posted April 20th, 2020 in chambers articles, coronavirus, emergency powers, enforcement, equality, news by sally

‘Section 4 of the Equality Act 2010 (‘EqA’) defines the protected characteristics as age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation. The current public health and economic emergency that society and business face has the potential to impact upon each protected characteristic. For example, there are reports of increased racist behaviour and commentary targeting Chinese and Italian citizens. There have also been publicised grievances around a requirement to wear protective equipment and the impact on religious dress. Such issues could be tested in the courts under the provisions of the EqA.’

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3PB, 7th April 2020

Source: www.3pb.co.uk

Vulnerability and the PSED: No arid debates. No straitjackets. No disciplinary stick – Local Government Lawyer

Posted April 20th, 2020 in appeals, disabled persons, equality, homelessness, housing, local government, news by tracey

‘The Court of Appeal has upheld the decisions of two councils where reviewing officers had considered the Public Sector Equality Duty without making clear findings as to whether the applicant in each case was disabled, and concluded that those applicants were not vulnerable. Michael Paget, Zoë Whittington, Catherine Rowlands and Rowan Clapp report.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 17th April 2020

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

One in seven female solicitors suffer bullying or discrimination – Legal Futures

‘One in seven female solicitors have experienced bullying, discrimination and harassment in the workplace over the past year, Law Society research has revealed.’

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Legal Futures, 16th April 2020

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Councils face legal action over access to education during lockdown – Local Government Lawyer

‘The Good Law Project is to take legal action against councils over access to education by children from low income families during the lockdown.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 9th April 2020

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Not a disciplinary stick – PSED and homeless reviews – Nearly Legal

Posted April 14th, 2020 in appeals, disabled persons, equality, homelessness, housing, local government, news by sally

‘We saw the approach of the Court of Appeal to the operation of the Public Sector Equality Duty (PSED) in possession proceedings in Luton Community Housing v Durdana. Now, in these joined appeals, the Court of Appeal turns its attention to PSED in homeless decisions and reviews.’

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Nearly Legal, 12th April 2020

Source: nearlylegal.co.uk

Woman’s attraction to chandeliers not a sexual orientation, Ipso says – The Guardian

‘A woman in a long-term relationship with a 92-year-old German chandelier has been told that her attraction to historic light fittings is not considered to be a protected sexual orientation.’

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The Guardian, 14th April 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Sharing or Caring? The Delineation of UK Parental Rights – Oxford Human Rights Hub

‘Following the Supreme Court’s refusal to permit an appeal in Chief Constable of Leicestershire v Hextall, the Court of Appeal’s earlier judgment remains binding. In a case which brings the paradoxes inherent in the UK’s system of workplace parental rights into sharp focus, the Court held that it is not discriminatory to pay a man on shared parental leave (SPL) less than an enhanced rate of maternity pay paid to a woman on maternity leave (ML).’

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Oxford Human Rights Hub, 7th April 2020

Source: ohrh.law.ox.ac.uk

Court of Appeal rejects appeal over changes made by county council to SEN transport policy affecting 16-18 year olds – Local Government Lawyer

‘The Court of Appeal has dismissed an appeal over a council’s decision to amend its Special Educational Needs Home to School/College Transport Policy for the 2019/20 academic year.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 7th April 2020

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk