Bannisters that never were.

You wait for 4 years for another case on bannisters and the Defective Premises Act 1972 and then two come along at once… Sternbaum v Dhesi [2016] EWCA Civ 155 Dodd v Raebarn Estates Ltd & Ors [2016] EWHC 262 (QB) Both can be dealt with fairly quickly and together, as the courts follow the […]

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Cocking & Anor v Eacott & Anor [2016] EWCA Civ 140 Neighbour nuisance. These are often difficult and indeed expensive cases. And always there are those affected who believe that a landlord is liable for their tenant’s nuisance (which they just aren’t, save for the extremely rare case in which the landlord has participated in […]

Of sink holes and strict liability

 Lafferty v Newark & Sherwood District Council [2016] EWHC 320 (QB) Does section 4(4) of the Defective Premises Act 1972 create a strict liability on the landlord for any defect, such that it covers latent or undetectable defects? The short answer is no. This appeal sets out why. Ms L was the tenant of Newark […]

Disrepair miscellany: Good, bad and ugly.

Perhaps illustrating the need for the Court of Appeal to deliver the judgment in Moorjani (see preceding post), the December 2015 issue of Legal Action has Beatrice Prevatt’s excellent annual  ‘housing repairs update’.  We have covered many of the cases noted in the update already, but there are some county court cases unreported elsewhere, remarkably […]

Repairing the caselaw on disrepair

I don’t think it is unfair to say that disrepair is not always viewed with great enthuiasm by practioners of housing law. So, I am going to plead with you all to stick with this post of mine even though on reflection it is far longer than I would have liked. It concerns a very […]

I saw a mouse. Where?…

A semi-guest note on a pest infestation nuisance county court case involving leaseholders. Interesting on both liability and quantum. Ojo & Ojo v London Borough of Hackney. County Court at Clerkenwell & Shoreditch 4 November 2015 The Claimants were secure tenants of the Defendant from 1983 and became leaseholders in 1995. They lived in a […]

Over egging it.

NJ Rickard Ltd -v- Holloway (CA 03/11/2015) (Lawtel note of extempore judgment only so far) Sometimes winning isn’t enough… A cautionary tale, in all sorts of ways. This was a Court of Appeal hearing on an appeal on costs. The original case was the landlord’s claim for rent arrears of some £6,000 and interest. The […]

Trial judge and costs. Ooops.

I’ve heard about a few costs decisions by trial judges recently which might be considered, to put it politely, interesting, or brave, in the Yes Minister sense. So it was with some interest that I read the Court of Appeal decision in Begum v Birmingham City Council [2015] EWCA Civ 386. Mr Majid and Mrs Begum […]

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 […]

As difficult as pulling teeth

Williamson v Khan. Birmingham County Court. Claim No: 3YS66585 (12 March 2015). Disrepair claims against private landlords are often interesting. Not least because said landlords have a tendency to take ridiculous positions and stick with them to trial, even when represented. This case is a glorious example of that. (A full copy of the judgment […]