Issue 112 - 3rd November 2008

Monday 3 November 2008

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Latest Housing Law News

Housing Ombudsman: the 2008 Annual Report of the Housing Ombudsman Service sets out the details of the ombudsman's work over the past year and contains useful digests of concluded cases. For a copy, click here.

Homelessness: the October 2008 Update from the Homelessness Action Team based at the Housing Corporation reviews developments on choice based letting and on domestic violence. For a copy, click here.

Anti-social behaviour: the Home Office's ASB and Crime Prevention Unit has just published the first issue (November 2008) of its ASB Focus magazine. Among other news, it announces that Government intends to commence the premises closure order provisions of the Criminal Justice & Immigration Act 2008 from 1 December 2008. For a copy of the magazine, click here.

Rent levels in social housing: Housing Corporation Circular 04/08 (October 2008) updates the Corporation's guidance to housing associations on rent levels, rent differentials and service charges. For a copy, click here.

Housing for Migrant Workers: Home from Home is a new report from the Building & Social Housing Foundation addressing the issues of migrant workers' housing. For a copy, click here.

The New Regulator: in evidence given to a Parliamentary Select Committee on 21 October 2008 the new Chief Executive of the Tenant Services Authority said that exists "to champion what consumers want". For more details of that evidence, click here. Meanwhile, the New Local Government Network has published Tenant Empowerment setting out its views on what the new regulatory regime must deliver. For a copy, click here.

The Latest Housing Case Law

30 October 2008
Birmingham CC v Shafi
[2008] EWCA Civ 1186
The council applied for injunctions to prevent the defendants from entering a considerable part of the city of Birmingham, from being in a public place with other named individuals (believed to be gang members) and from assaulting, harassing or intimidating anyone in the city. The power to make the injunctions was claimed to arise from Local Government Act 1972 section 222. A judge dismissed the claims. The Court of Appeal upheld his order. The injunctions sought were in effect equivalent to ASBOs. The council should apply to the courts for ASBOs rather than use injunction applications under section 222 to seek to obtain what were, in effect, the same remedies.
For a copy of the judgment, click here.

30 October 2008
R(Langley) v Preston Crown Court
[2008] EWHC 2623 Admin
A magistrates' court granted an ASBO. A month before it expired, the council applied for it to be varied by being extended for a further two years. That application was granted and the defendant wished to appeal. The crown court declined jurisdiction. The Divisional Court held that there was no right of appeal (by way of rehearing) to the crown court. The variation order could only be challenged by an appeal by case stated or by judicial review. For a copy of the judgment, click here.

30 October 2008
Brightlingsea Haven Ltd v Morris
[2008] EWHC 1928 (QB)
The defendants were the owner-occupiers of lodges on a caravan park site. The claimant company was the lessee of the site from the council owners. It claimed that the defendants only had periodic tenancies which could be ended by notice. The High Court held that the occupiers held leases that could not be determined before the end of the claimant's own lease (or any extension or replacement of that lease). For a copy of the judgment, click here.

29 October 2008
Boreh v Ealing LBC
[2008] EWCA Civ 1176
The council owed the disabled claimant a full housing duty under the homelessness provisions. It made her an offer of accommodation that she refused on the grounds that the house was not adapted to deal with her disabilities. The council decided that the offer was suitable because the property could be adapted. The Court of Appeal allowed her appeal. Although an offer of unsuitable accommodation could be rendered suitable if made with certain, binding and enforceable assurances as to what work would be carried-out to it later, in the instant case at the date the offer fell to be accepted (or refused) insufficient such assurances had been given. For a copy of the judgment, click here.

27 October 2008
Manchester CC v Moran
House of Lords
An appeal committee of the House of Lords has granted Mrs Moran permission to appeal against the decision of the Court of Appeal to the effect that victims of domestic violence can cease to be "homeless" on being given shelter by a women's refuge. For the Court of Appeal decision, click here.

17 October 2008
Kay v UK
Application 37341/06
European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR).
The President of a Chamber of the Fourth Section of the ECrtHR has invited the observations of the UK government on the application made by Mr Kay arising from the House of Lords judgment in Kay v Lambeth LBC [2006] UKHL 10. The question posed by the ECrtHR (on which it will potentially examine admissibility and merits together) is "Did the applicants have the opportunity to have the proportionality of their evictions determined by an independent tribunal in the light of the relevant principles under Article 8?" readers interested in that development may also wish to note "Article 8 and possession proceedings - the saga continues" which has been published at [2008] Conveyancer & Property Lawyer 437.

Housing Law Events in November

4 November 2008
Housing Supply
An Oxford University Housing Seminar

For the details, click here

5 November 2008
Homelessness
A HLPA Seminar

For the details, click here

11-13 November 2008
"Changing Times" Housing Conference (in Cambourne)
CIH Eastern Region

For the details, click here

12 November 2008
Asylum Seekers and Eligibility
A HLPA Seminar

For the details, click here

19-21 November 2008
Annual Lettings & Homelessness Conference (in Staffordshire)
Chartered Institute of Housing

For the details, click here

19 November 2008
Housing Law Update
The HLPA meeting

For the details, click here

26 November 2008
Annual Housing Conference
Social Housing Law Association

For the details, click here

26 November 2008
Landlord Liability for Nuisance.
A HLPA Seminar

For the details, click here

Dates for the December Diary

1 December 2008
The Crime & ASB Conference (in Harrogate)
Northern Housing Consortium

For the details, click here

3 December 2008
Residential Landlord & Tenant Conference
Professional Conferences

For the details, click here

9 December 2008
Housing & Regeneration Act 2008
A CIH Conference

For the details, click here

10 December 2008
The Housing Law Conference
The Annual HLPA Conference in London.

For the details, click here.

12 December 2008
Housing Management
A Lime Legal Conference.

For the details, click here.

 

Garden Court Seminars

Mental Health and Housing Seminar

Location: Garden Court Chambers, 57-60 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3LJ

Date: Thursday 13 November 2008 from 18:30 to 20:00

CPD Hours: 1.5

Speakers: John Beckley, Catherine O'Donnell and District Judge Sue Jackson

Cost: £20.00 per person

Click here for more info

 

Registered Social landlords-challenging human rights breaches and possession/allocation decisions since Weaver

Location: Garden Court Chambers, 57-60 Lincoln's Inn Fields, London WC2A 3LJ

Date: Thursday 20 November 2008 from 18:30 to 20:00

CPD Hours: 1.5

Speakers: David Watkinson & Edward Fitzpatrick

Cost: £20.00 per person

Click here for more info

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