Disabled woman to take DWP to court over ‘immoral’ automatic benefit deductions – The Guardian

‘A disabled woman is to challenge the Department for Work and Pensions in court over what she calls its “immoral” policy of allowing landlords and utilities companies to automatically make deductions from monthly benefits payments without the claimant’s consent.’

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The Guardian, 15th October 2021

Source: www.theguardian.com

Homelessness – renewed applications and overlooked facts – Nearly Legal

‘This was a judicial review of Westminster’s refusal to accept a third homelessness application from Ms Ibrahim, following a review decision upholding a decision that she was intentionally homeless, and a rejection of a second application.’

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Nearly Legal, 10th October 2021

Source: nearlylegal.co.uk

Regulations and guidance issued on support councils must give domestic abuse victims – Local Government Lawyer

‘The Government has published new regulations and guidance setting out the level of support councils are required to provide to domestic abuse victims who need to escape home.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 5th October 2021

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Bedrooms – hypothetical rather than actual. Bedroom tax and actual use. – Nearly Legal

Posted October 4th, 2021 in appeals, benefits, housing, landlord & tenant, news by tracey

‘The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions v Hockley & Anor (2019) EWCA Civ 1080. A quick note because I somehow missed this at the time. The Court of Appeal overturned the Upper Tribunal decision on whether assessment of entitlement to bedrooms for the bedroom tax was connected to the actual occupiers and their actual or potential use of the rooms. (Here there were two children and two bedrooms, neither of which could accommodate two children.)’

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Nearly Legal, 3rd October 2021

Source: nearlylegal.co.uk

Possession – more change in England – Local Government Lawyer

Posted October 4th, 2021 in housing, landlord & tenant, local government, news, repossession by tracey

‘From the beginning of this month, there has been yet more change on the possession front. Suzanne Gregson examines the latest position.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 4th October 2021

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

No case to answer: prosecution under s. 82 Environmental Protection Act 1990 dismissed – Local Government Lawyer

‘Sarah Salmon reports on how a social landlord successfully defended a private prosecution brought by an occupier of one of its properties under section 82 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 1st October 2021

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Judge refuses to authorise deprivation of liberty of vulnerable 12-year-old girl in acute psychiatric admissions unit, despite lack of alternative accommodation – Local Government Lawyer

Posted September 29th, 2021 in children, detention, hospitals, housing, local government, mental health, news by sally

‘A High Court judge has declined to find that it was in the best interests of a 12-year-old girl (LT), who does not have a psychiatric condition requiring hospitalisation, to be deprived of her liberty on an acute psychiatric admission unit.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 28th September 2021

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Research: “Billions could be saved” by funding more legal advice – Legal Futures

Posted September 28th, 2021 in budgets, debts, health, housing, legal advice, news by sally

‘The Treasury could save billions of pounds a year if more public money is put into specialist legal advice, according to new research.’

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Legal Futures, 28th September 2021

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Housing disrepair claims and costs – Local Government Lawyer

Posted September 20th, 2021 in costs, housing, landlord & tenant, local government, news, repairs by tracey

‘Social landlords who do not challenge costs are potentially overpaying by tens of thousands of pounds in some of these matters. Alex Bagnall explains how they can secure significant reductions.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 17th September 2021

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Claimant wins Upper Tribunal appeal over tenancy agreement and housing benefit – Local Government Lawyer

Posted September 17th, 2021 in appeals, benefits, housing, landlord & tenant, local government, news by tracey

‘The London Borough of Sutton has lost a case in the Upper Tribunal over whether a tenancy arrangement was a sham to increase housing benefit.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 16th September 2021

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Injunction for re-entry and balance of convenience. – Nearly Legal

Posted September 15th, 2021 in appeals, housing, injunctions, landlord & tenant, mental health, news, repossession by tracey

‘Mahandru v Nielson (2021) EWHC 2297 (QB). An appeal of a County Court decision to refuse an interim injunction for re-entry in a claim for illegal eviction.’

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Nearly Legal, 12th September 2021

Source: nearlylegal.co.uk

Cancelling a debt moratorium – some issues – Nearly Legal

Posted September 15th, 2021 in civil procedure rules, debts, housing, landlord & tenant, mental health, news, repossession by tracey

‘Axnoller Events Ltd v Brake & Anor (mental health crisis moratorium) (2021) EWHC 2308 (Ch). I’m not going into any detail on the background to this judgment. It forms part of what has been by any measure truly epic litigation, which has yet to culminate in a possession trial on one property and an eviction trial on another property (with the parties’ roles reversed). If you have several days to spare, the many and varied previous judgments are worth a read, not least as offering intermittent lessons in how not to litigate. However, this is the first judgment dealing with debt moratoria and applications (or claims) to cancel a moratorium under the Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space Moratorium and Mental Health Crisis Moratorium) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020 so it is of considerable interest.’

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Nearly Legal, 12th September 2021

Source: nearlylegal.co.uk

Another month, another immunity case. Another question ducked by the court? – Local Government Lawyer

Posted September 13th, 2021 in appeals, enforcement notices, housing, immunity, local government, news, planning by tracey

‘Roderick Morton analyses an appeal against a decision of an inspector to dismiss the appellant’s appeal against an enforcement notice issued by a council in respect of the unauthorised conversion of a property into two flats.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 10th September 2021

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Grenfell Inquiry: Government petition launched calling minister to examine discrimination role in fire – The Independent

‘A government petition has been launched calling for an inquiry into the role of institutional discrimination in the Grenfell Tower fire. The petition is calling for an “independent, expertise-led and community-centred” inquiry into whether institutional racism, classism and/or discrimination against religion contributed to the events leading to the fire.’

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The Independent, 11th September 2021

Source: www.independent.co.uk

Government poised to water down ‘radical and necessary’ overhaul of England’s planning system, report suggests – The Independent

Posted September 13th, 2021 in bills, government departments, housing, local government, news, planning, political parties by tracey

‘The government is poised to abandon key elements of its “radical and necessary” overhaul of England’s planning laws – which ministers argued would “help us build the homes our country desperately needs” – following a backlash from Tory MPs and voters in the south, according to a report.’

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The Independent, 11th September 2021

Source: www.independent.co.uk

First Tier Tribunal wrongly struck out landlord penalty appeal after solicitor failed to pay hearing fee, Upper Tribunal rules – Local Government Lawyer

‘A private landlord will have her appeal of a £7,000 penalty for failure to license a house in multiple occupation (HMO) decided by a different judge after it was initially refused by the First Tier Tribunal (FTT) because her solicitor failed to pay the hearing fee on time, the Upper Tribunal has ruled.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 7th September 2021

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Late service charge demands and the importance of contemplating forfeiture for recovering legal costs – Nearly Legal

Posted September 6th, 2021 in appeals, costs, housing, landlord & tenant, leases, news, service charges by tracey

‘This was a second appeal to the Court of Appeal from the Upper Tribunal on two issues arising from long running litigation between the freeholder, West India Quay and the head lessee, East Tower Apartments (ETAL) on the arrangements for and charging for utilities for the residential parts of the building (a 33 storey tower, including a hotel). The initial proceedings brought by ETAL had gone through the FTT and the Upper Tribunal and had resulted in a significant reduction in charges. For our purposes, the relevant part of these decisions where that ‘Switch 2) – the utility provider – had levied “standing charges” (actually costs for reading meters and preparing bills) from 2008 onwards. The freeholder had included these charges in the utility charge to the lessee. The FTT had found that they were not recoverable, as there had never been “a contractually valid demand for them as service charges, and it was not open to the Landlord to “re-allocate” them as general service charge.”’

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Nearly Legal, 5th September 2021

Source: nearlylegal.co.uk

Research Briefing: Disabled adaptations in leasehold flats and common parts – House of Commons Library

Posted September 6th, 2021 in disabled persons, equality, government departments, housing, leases, news, parliament by tracey

‘This paper covers how leaseholders in flats can gain consent to home adaptations. It covers the issue of adaptations in the common parts of residential buildings.’

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House of Commons Library, 5th September 2021

Source: commonslibrary.parliament.uk

‘How does a jointly held property pass on death?’ – Family Law

Posted September 3rd, 2021 in housing, inheritance tax, news, succession, wills by tracey

‘When meeting with clients to discuss their succession planning, many cannot recall whether their property is held jointly as joint tenants or jointly as tenants in common.’

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Family Law, 31st August 2021

Source: www.familylaw.co.uk

Man guilty over abusive emails sent to Starmer and Thornberry – BBC News

Posted September 3rd, 2021 in electronic mail, harassment, housing, local government, news, political parties by tracey

‘A man who sent dozens of abusive and threatening emails to Sir Keir Starmer and Emily Thornberry has been found guilty of harassment.’

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BBC News, 2nd September 2021

Source: www.bbc.co.uk