2013 09 Children

Tuesday 1 October 2013

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R (KO) v LB of Lambeth [2013] EWHC 2637 (Admin) (Judge Alice Robinson): The Court refused to grant interim relief directing a local authority children's services to provide accommodation large enough for a mother and her baby but also to enable her 6-year-old son to stay overnight or possibly live with her. There were parallel private law family proceedings ongoing in which contact and residence were in issue. The Court found that the local authority was rational to conclude the older child was not a child in need and that the baby did not have a need to live with his brother. Applying the test for mandatory injunctive relief, relief was refused but directions were given for an expedited hearing.

R (N and N) v Newham LBC and Essex CC [2013] EWHC 2475 (Admin) (Swift J DBE): A local authority's duty to assess a child's needs under section 17 of the Children Act 1989 did not depend on that child being ordinarily resident in the local authority's area. Physical presence is the correct test. This affirmed the test laid down by the High Court in R (S) v Wandsworth LBC [2001] EWHC 709 (Admin). Click here for judgment.

R (Kebede) v Newcastle CC [2013] EWCA Civ 960 (Laws, McCome, Stanley Burnton LLJs): A local authority had been wrong to refuse th provide grants to two former relevant children in respect of their university fees. The Court of Appeal upheld the High Court's decision that 'expenses connected with his education' under section 24B(2), Children ACt 1989 includes tuition fees and can be up to 100% of the fees. The Court of Appeal found that a local authority was not entitled to look to its resources to consider whether assistance would be given because the duty under section 23C(4) is a duty importing an objective test as to whether assistance is to be given but resources of a local authority were not a relevant factor. See paragraphs 17-19 distinguishing R v Gloucestershire CC ex parte Barry [1997] AC 584. Click here for judgment.

R (Kebede) v Secretary of State for Business Innovation and Skills [2013] EWHC 2396 (Admin) (Burnett J): The High Court dismissed an application for judicial review challenging the regulations which bar migrant care leavers with discretionary leave to remain to access student loans in order to take up university places. Such measures are not discriminatory. Click here for judgment.

n.b. Permission to appeal has been granted.

R (GE) v Secretary of State for the Home Department and Bedford Borough Council [2013] EWHC 2186 (Admin) (CMG Ockelton): An age assessment claim was struck out in circumstances where the Court decided that the duties owed to a person as a former relevant child were owed only to those who had received services during their minority, not those who should have received such services but had not. In so concluding, the High Court refused to ascede to its jurisdiction to make a finding of fact as to whether the local authority's age assessment was lawful, what GE's age was in fact at the time of the age assessment and whether she would have been entitled to and received support under the Children Act 1989 had she been correctly assessed to be in fact the age claimed. Click here for judgment.

n.b. Permission to appeal has been applied for to the Court of Appeal in this case.

R (X) v Tower Hamlets LBC [2013] EWCA Civ 904 (Maurice Kay, Lewison, Gloster LLJs): The Court declared a local authority's policy in relation to the payment of family foster carers, who were paid less than unrelated foster carers, unlawful as the local authority had failed to establish cogent reasons for departing from statutory guidance requiring equal treatment of foster carers. Click here for judgment.

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