Our community care team undertakes significant litigation and has cross-disciplinary expertise that sets it apart from other chambers. We regularly advise leading individuals in need of community care services as well as charities and non-governmental organisations both in the UK and internationally.
We also regularly provide legal advisory support to organisations during parliamentary inquiries and the passage of key community care legislation. We have particular strength in the field of migrant rights.
Areas of Expertise
- Support for looked after children and care leavers under the Children Act 1989
- Support for vulnerable adults and carers under the Care Act 2014
- Support for parent carers and young carers
- Support for persons subject to immigration control (including those subject to Schedule 3 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002)
- Age assessments
- Education, including school exclusions and support for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities
- Support for victims of trafficking
- Asylum support
- Support for those on immigration bail under Immigration Act 2016, Sch 10
- Disabled facilities grants
- Continuing healthcare and access to NHS treatment
- Disputes between social services and health authorities
- Charging issues arising from health and social care
- Support under s117 Mental Health Act 1983 following discharge from hospital
- Human rights and discrimination issues arising in all of these areas
Our community care team
Our community care barristers are regularly instructed in judicial review proceedings and have appeared at all court and tribunal levels from the First-Tier Tribunal through to the Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights. A number of team members are on the preferred panel of counsel for the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC).
The strength of the team lies in individuals’ expertise across related areas of law such as public law, immigration, housing, civil liberties and human rights, welfare benefits, equality and anti-discrimination, Court of Protection, mental health, trafficking and LGBTI issues. Garden Court is ranked by Chambers & Partners in Band 2 for community care, Band 1 for immigration and social housing and Band 3 for civil liberties.
R (O) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 148 (Admin)
Systemic challenge to delays in the process of making "conclusive grounds" decisions in respect of potential victims of human trafficking
R (MN) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 3268 (QB)
Standard of proof to be applied in determining whether there are "conclusive grounds" to believe that person is a victim of trafficking.
R (K and Anr) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 2951 (Admin); R (MXY) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 2780 (Admin)
Successful challenge to the Home Secretary’s cut of weekly subsistence for certain victims of trafficking. The High Court quashed the cuts, restoring payments to more than 1000 victims and £1million + in back payments to those affected by the cuts.
R (Mustafa) v Kent County Council and the Home Office  EWHC 2025 (Admin)
First case to consider the definition of an “asylum seeker” as a matter of EU Law subsequent to the coming into effect of the Asylum Procedures Directive in 2013, in the context of a “former relevant child” seeking accommodation and support under the Children Act 1989.
R (KI) v London Borough of Brent  EWHC 1068 (Admin)
Successful judicial review challenge to the failure by the London Borough of Brent to recognise a young person as a “former relevant child” under the Children Act 1989.
R (CXF) v Central Bedfordshire Council and North Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group, MIND intervening  EWCA Civ 2852
Leading case on whether, and in what circumstances, clinical commissioning groups and local authorities owe a duty to detained mental patients to provide them with after-care support in the community when they are permitted to temporarily leave the hospital for activities and therapy. Permission is pending to appeal the case to the Supreme Court.
R (DA and Ors) v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 
Acted for the intervener, Shelter, in the Supreme Court challenge to the legality of revised benefit cap, arguing that the cap unlawfully discriminates against lone parents with young children. Judgment is awaited.
R (AS) v Kent County Council  UKUT 446
Leading case on use of dental assessments for the purposes of age assessment.