The good, the bad and the ugly.

In a week of depressing, worrying news on homelessness – of which more below – there were at least two bits of good news. First, in Gureckis, R (On the Application Of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2017] EWHC 3298 (Admin) the Government’s policy of deporting rough sleeping EU citizens was found to […]

“I made him aware he is very lucky”

A Local Government Ombudsman Report on the actions of Maidstone Borough Council towards a homeless household makes for depressing reading. Both for the actions (and inactions) of the Council and for what it lays bare about the attitude to the homeless. Mr and Mrs A and their young children were owed the full housing duty […]

How long has this been going on? – settled accommodation

Doka v London Borough of Southwark [2017] EWCA Civ 1532 The issue in this second appeal was what amounts to ‘settled accommodation’, sufficient to break the chain of causation of intentional homelessness. Mr D was homeless and in priority need. However, Southwark found he was intentionally homeless on the basis that his last settled accommodation […]

Significantly more vulnerable – how much, or what kind?

Panayiotou v London Borough of Waltham Forest (2017) EWCA Civ 1624 This is an important court of appeal decision on the meaning of ‘significantly’ in Lord Neuberger’s definition of vulnerability under s.189(1)(c) Housing Act 1996 in Hotak v Southwark LBC (2015) UKSC 30, [2016] AC 811 (our report). Lord Neuberger, at 53, said: “Accordingly, I consider that the approach […]

Guidance on reducing homelessness

The DCLG has published the draft statutory code of guidance to accompany the Homelessness Reduction Act (in force from April 2018). The draft code is now subject to 8 weeks consultation. The DCLG has also announced the fairly small additional sums that councils will, initially, receive to implement the Act. This Guidance will no doubt […]

Vulnerability, medical evidence & Now Medical

Thomas v Lambeth LBC, County Court at Central London, 16 March 2017 This is a s.204 appeal in the County Court of a vulnerability decision by Lambeth. A copy of the transcript of judgment is here. Of particular interest is that the judgment concerns and indeed turns on Now Medical reports on the homeless applicant […]

Dwelling in temporary accommodation

Dacorum Borough Council v Bucknall (aka Acheampong) [2017] EWHC 2094 (QB) When is temporary accommodation provided under the Housing Act 1996 Section 193(2) duty occupied ‘as a dwelling’ fo the purposes of Section 3 Protection from Eviction Act 1977? We know from R (N) v Lewisham London Borough Council [2015] AC 1259 (our report) that section […]

Not looked into enough to be unaware

Trindade v London Borough of Hackney (2017) EWCA Civ 942 A second appeal of a homeless decision that Ms T was intentionally homeless, on the issues of whether Ms T’s actions were “an act or omission in good faith on the part of a person who was unaware of any relevant fact” as per s.192(2) Housing […]

Education and out of borough homeless accommodation

This is going to be a very short post on a very long judgment – 275 paragraphs worth. The main case was on the right to education under article 2 of the First Protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights, in relation to a local authority’s failure to provide a school place. However, there are […]

Making it up as you go.

C, R (on the application of) v The London Borough of Islington (2017) EWHC 1288 (Admin) C was accepted for the full housing duty by Islington, with her 3 children, as a result of domestic violence. C is profoundly deaf. She had been living in Southwark, but following the DV, was in refuge in Islington and applied […]