‘Duty of care’ – Not in housing allocation

Darby v Richmond on Thames London Borough Council [2017] EWCA Civ 252 Many of you, I suspect, will be like me – you hear from clients, prospective clients, tenants etc., on a very frequent basis that in making a housing decision, or indeed in not making it, the council or housing association has ‘breached its duty […]

Community contribution, priority stars and discrimination

XC, R (on the application of) v London Borough of Southwark [2017] EWHC 736 (Admin) This was a judicial review of Southwark’s allocation policy as it applied to transfers. Specifically, the issue was whether Southwark’s policy, in awarding ‘priority stars’ for ‘community contribution’ discriminated against women and the disabled. There is a substantial backstory to XC’s […]

“Perverse Incentives”

Osman, R (on the application of) v London Borough of Harrow [2017] EWHC 274 (Admin) A challenge to Harrow’s allocation policy, specifically on the ‘downgrading’ of allocation priority for overcrowded households in PRS accommodation, while existing Harrow tenants kept the higher priority for overcrowding on a transfer application. Ms O had been in Band A originally. […]

What Westminster did next. Sending the homeless to Coventry

As has been reported here and here, Westminster City Council have decided to adopt various new housing policies. In particular, there are new proposed policies on temporary accommodation and permanent accommodation offers for homeless households. The documents can be found here. The new ‘policy framework’ will mean the following: For both temporary accommodation AND private sector […]

We’re going to need another canto – 2016 roundup

“We to the place have come, where I have told thee Thou shalt behold the people dolorous Who have foregone the good of intellect.” (canto 3) Midway between Christmas and new year, I found myself, fat and indolent, on the sofa, contemplating a year-end post. The trouble with 2016, I realised, is that it made […]

Second (non-) succession

In Holley v Hillingdon LBC [2016] EWCA Civ 1052, Mr Holley was seeking to challenge the council’s decision to evict him and his brother from a three bedroom property that could sleep up to six persons, in which Mr Holley had lived for 32 years of his life and where he was suffering from a range of mental […]

What do points mean? (No prizes)

Woolfe, R (On the Application Of) v London Borough of Islington [2016] EWHC 1907 (Admin) Another allocation judicial review, related, but perhaps distinct from the line of ‘reasonable preference’ cases we have previously seen. The issue, in part, Islington’s use of a ‘points threshold’ for allowing bidding for properties, though not for qualification to the […]

Housing needs and household members

Jones v Luton Borough Council [2016] EWHC 2036 (Admin) This was a judicial review of a decision by Luton Council Housing Appeals and Review Panel not to offer Mr Jones a tenancy of the property of which Mr J’s late father was the tenant, but instead offer a one bed property. Mr J’s mother and […]

Allocation & unreasonable behaviour

YA v London Borough of Hammersmith And Fulham [2016] EWHC 1850 (Admin) YA was in care with H&F for a number of years and was now a care leaver. During that previous period as a child in care, he had committed a number of criminal offences, though these were spent under Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 […]

Curiosities and wonders

When the First Respondent in a possession case is styled “The Sovereign Indigenous Peoples of Scotland” and the second, named, Respondent describes himself as “A Member of the Government of Scotland”, you suspect that you know in advance how things will go. In The Petition of the Scottish Parliamentary Body against (First) The Sovereign Indigenous Peoples of […]