Doesn’t it make you proud to be English?*

The Immigration Bill 2015 has been published and will have a Second Reading in the House of Commons on October 13, 2015. It contains some truly remarkable provisions about housing. But first, short re-cap to remind you how we got to this stage. The Immigration Act 2014 introduced the concept of the “right to rent”. […]

Service charges, costs and the FTT(PC)

Service charge disputes in the FTT(PC)/LVT are generally regarded as a “no” or “low” costs proceedings. The Tribunals have very limited powers to award costs. In general terms, the FTT(PC) can award unlimited sums in respect of either wasted costs or unreasonable behaviour (r.13, FTT(PC) rules), whilst the LVT (as it remains in Wales) can […]

What a relief!

Although it is a commercial property case, Freifeld v West Kensington Court Ltd [2015] EWCA Civ 806, is of interest and relevance to residential landlord and tenant law as well, as the Court of Appeal grapple with the approach to be taken to granting relief from forfeiture in the case of intentional breaches of covenant, […]

Legal Aid Merits Test

With thanks to James Stark at Garden Court North for alerting me to this. From Monday (27.7.15) there is an important amendment to the Legal Aid merits test in S.I. 2015/1571. In short, “borderline” and “poor” cases are back in scope if it is necessary to prevent a breach of a persons Convention rights or […]

Party like it’s 1957

1957 was an important year. Russell Endean became the first man to be out “handled the ball” in a Test Cricket match. Anthony Eden resigned and Harold Macmillan became PM. The Cat in the Hat was first published. And it was the last time that anyone updated the rent levels in the statutory covenants relating […]

A tantalizing note

R (Faizi) v Brent LBC (Admin Court, 17.6.15) is only available as a Lawtel note and all may become clear once a transcript is obtained, but it is a very confusing little case. At the risk of overly simplifying , in England, homelessness is governed by Pt.7, Housing Act 1996. Where a person applies for […]

Abandon all hope, ye who enter here

We were pretty scathing about the Conservative manifesto plans before the election and, yesterday, with the Queen’s Speech, we got more detail of their plans for government. The Speech itself is available here, but what you actually need to read is the background briefing paper, available here. The Full Employment and Welfare Benefits Bill will […]

Promises and lies

With the manifestos all now published, I thought it might be interesting to look at what is being said about housing by the three main parties. I might do the others later, if I have time. Conservatives The highlight of housing policy seems to be a huge extension in the Right to Buy, to take […]

Selective Licensing Reforms

If the case-law is to be believed, local authorities have a hard enough time introducing selective licensing schemes as it is (see R (Peat) v Hyndburn and R (Regas) v Enfield)). Well, the government has published a draft SI designed to make it even harder. In addition to the existing conditions which have to be […]

Part 7 and capacity

R (MT) v Oxford CC, High Ct, (Lawtel note only as far as I can tell) is an interesting little case on capacity and homelessness Mr MT lacks capacity and is unable to manage his housing or financial affairs. He (or, I suspect, his father who was also his litigation friend) applied to Oxford CC […]