Coronavirus, public health and coercive powers

The UK Coronavirus regulations contain legal powers to control a public health crisis. David Lawson looks at the key elements. Read more
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Feb 12, 2020

Housing Ombudsman issues guidance for landlords on responding to complaints

The Housing Ombudsman has published new guidance notes aimed at assisting landlords with policies and in responding to complaints.
Jan 27, 2020

Lambeth reaches “first of its kind” memorandum of understanding with all housing associations in borough

Lambeth Council has reached a joint agreement with all ten housing associations operating in the borough, with the ‘memorandum of understanding’ said to be the first of its kind in London.
Jan 27, 2020

Government to set up new regulator for oversight of high-risk buildings

The Government has unveiled plans for a new regulator to oversee the design, construction and occupation of high-risk buildings.
Jan 21, 2020

Court of Appeal rejects council bid for borough-wide injunction, issues guidance on tackling unauthorised encampments

The Court of Appeal has dismissed an appeal by the London Borough of Bromley over a High Court judge’s refusal to grant a borough-wide injunction on encampment at all accessible public spaces in the council’s area.
Jan 16, 2020

Government sets up taskforce to tackle serious and organised waste crime

The Government has launched a Joint Unit for Waste Crime (JUWC) bringing together law enforcement agencies, environmental regulators, HMRC and the National Crime Agency from across the UK to target waste criminals.
Jan 08, 2020

City council implements ‘Martyn’s Law’ on security at public venues, calls on government to introduce legislation

Manchester City Council is to enshrine the principles of ‘Martyn’s Law’, which is intended to improve security at public venues, into its future regulations.
Jan 03, 2020

Ministry awards £4m to 100+ councils to help tackle criminal landlords and letting agents

More than 100 councils in England will share over £4m as part of a crackdown on criminal landlords and letting agents, the Housing Secretary has announced.
Jan 02, 2020

Council prosecution sees landlord fined £27k for multiple HMO breaches

A landlord in Luton has been ordered to pay £27,000 at a sentencing hearing after previously pleading guilty to illegally managing a house in multiple occupation.
Dec 31, 2019

Fire authority to appoint solicitors, barristers to £480k specialist legal services framework

The West Midlands Fire and Rescue Authority is to set up a specialist fire safety legal services framework agreement worth up to £480,000 over four years.
Dec 30, 2019

Mayor’s Office for Police and Crime gives notice for re-tender of £65m national legal services framework

The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) has issued a prior information notice on its plans to re-tender for a national legal services framework worth an estimated £65m.


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February 07, 2020

Councils express concern at prospect of witnesses at Grenfell Inquiry securing immunity from use of evidence in later prosecutions

The Local Government Association has said it is “extremely concerned” that some witnesses to the Grenfell Inquiry could be granted immunity from having any evidence they give used in subsequent prosecutions against them.
February 07, 2020

Green Space borough-wide preventative injunctions: the view from the Court of Appeal

Steven Woolf examines the Court of Appeal's recent decision and guidance on Green Space borough-wide preventative injunctions.
January 29, 2020

New pre-action protocols for disrepair and possession claims

New pre-action protocols will bring clarity for disrepair and possession claims, writes Sian Evans, setting out the key changes.
January 29, 2020

Securing approval for selective licensing

David Smith considers the lessons to be learned from the Government's most recent decisions in relation to selective licensing schemes.
January 29, 2020

Multi-storey residential buildings: the latest Government advice

Mark London, Michael Wharfe and Yaasica Hamilton-Haye examine advice issued last week by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government for owners of multi-storey and multi-occupied residential buildings.
January 17, 2020

Adult safeguarding and the Anti-social behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014

Kevin Chan explains how his local authority recently used the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 to safeguard a vulnerable man from abuse using a civil injunction.
December 20, 2019

Assumption of responsibility

Andrew Warnock QC asks the question many involved with the public sector have been asking since the Supreme Court ruling in Poole v GN – when does an 'Assumption of Responsibility' arise?
December 17, 2019

Strasbourg and the 'bedroom tax'

Alex Ewing considers an important ruling from the European Court of Human Rights on the so-called 'bedroom tax' that could have potentially significant implications for the way in which discrimination cases are approached in the future.

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Dec 27, 2019

Home Office stands down as independent reviewer of Prevent programme

The government has stood down Lord Carlile from the role of Independent Reviewer of the Prevent programme in the face of a legal challenge.
Dec 16, 2019

Council prosecution sees landowners ordered to pay £14k over illegal hostel

The owners of an illegal hostel in Swanley have been ordered to pay £14,000 in fines and costs after being prosecuted for failing to comply with two planning enforcement notices.
Dec 12, 2019

Birmingham landlord fined £20k after breaching housing regulations

A Birmingham landlord has been fined nearly £20,000 after pleading guilty to failing to obtain a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) licence and to 13 breaches of HMO Management Regulations.
Dec 11, 2019

Court of Appeal dismisses appeal by council over bid to include cost of supervising driver conduct in fees for taxi and PHV vehicle licences

The Court of Appeal has dismissed a council’s appeal over whether it acted unlawfully when it resolved to fix the fees for vehicle licences for taxis and private hire vehicles at an amount which included recovery of all or part of the cost of supervising the conduct of drivers licensed to drive such vehicles.
Dec 02, 2019

Council secures £400k+ confiscation order against landlord over house in multiple occupation with 15 tenants

Joint action by Hillingdon Council’s planning enforcement and trading standards teams has seen a Hayes landlord ordered to pay more than £430,000 after she turned her property into an illegal House in Multiple Occupation (HMO).
Nov 29, 2019

Council submits £130m claims in High Court bid to recover costs under housing estate maintenance PFI

Camden Council has submitted claims to the High Court to recover costs from the contractor PFIC (Partners for Improvement in Camden) and its principal subcontractors, who previously had responsibility for refurbishment and maintenance of the Chalcots Estate, under a private finance initiative agreement.
Nov 28, 2019

Met Police agrees to delete information after referral of primary school age child under Prevent programme

The Metropolitan Police has agreed to delete information relating to a referral of a primary school age child under the government’s Prevent programme, and other referring authorities have also agreed to correct and delete the relevant records.
Nov 28, 2019

Resident fails in Court of Appeal challenge to anti-social behaviour injunction

A resident of a housing association in London has failed in a Court of Appeal challenge over an injunction restraining him from committing anti-social behaviour.
Nov 27, 2019

Battle over Cabinet decision to retro-fit sprinkler systems on tower blocks at cost of £19m heads to Court of Appeal

The Court of Appeal has given a local resident permission to appeal a High Court ruling on the lawfulness of a decision by the Cabinet at Birmingham City Council to fund – at a cost of £19m – the retro-fitting of sprinkler systems to all the tower blocks it owns.
Nov 26, 2019

Camden Council obtains first rogue landlord banning order in London

Camden Council is reported to have obtained London’s first rogue landlord banning order against a man who repeatedly placed tenants’ lives at risk through letting unsafe housing.
Nov 26, 2019

High Court judge says injunctions against street protests over teaching of “LGBT issues” at Birmingham school must continue

Injunctions restricting street protests over an infant and junior school’s teaching of “LGBT issues” should remain in place, a High Court judge has ruled.
Nov 25, 2019

Uber London “not fit and proper” to hold private hire operator licence, TfL concludes

Transport for London (TfL) has decided not to grant Uber London Limited (Uber) a new private hire operator's licence after concluding the company was “not fit and proper”.
Nov 22, 2019

Council in breach of Home Standard for fire and electrical safety, regulator finds

Runnymede Borough Council has breached the Home Standard for fire and electrical safety, the Regulator for Social Housing has said.
Nov 18, 2019

London council to take battle over borough-wide injunction and camping on open spaces to Court of Appeal next month

The Court of Appeal will next month (3 December) hear an appeal by Bromley Council over the High Court’s refusal to extend an interim injunction prohibiting camping on 171 open spaces and car parks in the borough.
Nov 06, 2019

Upper Tribunal rules on spent convictions and 'fit and proper person' test for property licence applications

The Upper Tribunal has handed down a significant ruling on spent convictions and the ‘fit and proper person’ test for holding a property licence under the Housing Act 2004.
Nov 04, 2019

Resident secures funding for legal challenge over impact of public space protection order on homeless

A local resident campaigning for the scrapping of a public space protection order (PSPO) introduced by Poole Borough Council last year over its impact on homeless people has secured enough funding to launch a legal challenge.
Nov 04, 2019

Charges dropped against man praying outside abortion clinic covered by Public Spaces Protection Order

The Crown Prosecution Service has dropped charges against a man who was arrested when he was praying outside an abortion clinic that is covered by a Public Spaces Protection Order (PSPO).
Nov 01, 2019

Councils unable to enforce against unlicensed taxi/PHV drivers because of outdated laws, LGA warns

Outdated legislation and new technology have meant that councils are unable to take enforcement action against the rising number of unlicensed drivers operating in their area, the Local Government Association has warned.
Nov 01, 2019

Landlord ordered to pay £25k+ over unsafe, unlicensed HMOs

A landlord who operated five unlicensed houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) has been ordered to pay more than £25,000 after a prosecution by the London Borough of Redbridge.
Oct 31, 2019

Information Commissioner issues first ‘Opinion’ under Data Protection Act

The Information Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, has issued her first Commissioner’s Opinion under the Data Protection Act 2018, setting out her advice and recommendations on the police’s use of ‘live facial recognition’ (LFR).
Oct 28, 2019

Property owners fail in challenge to refusal by tribunal to hear appeal over financial penalties for unlicensed HMOs

The Upper Tribunal has rejected an appeal by two property owners over the First-Tier Tribunal’s refusal to consider an appeal brought out of time against financial penalties imposed on them by a London borough for running unlicensed houses in multiple occupation (HMOs).
Oct 25, 2019

ECHR finds ‘bedroom tax’ discriminates against victims of domestic violence

The so-called ‘bedroom tax’ unlawfully discriminates against vulnerable victims of domestic violence, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ruled.
Oct 23, 2019

Council defeats appeal by driver over refusal of taxi or PHV licence for false declaration about pending convictions

A court has upheld a decision by Telford & Wrekin Council not to grant a convicted man a licence to drive a taxi or private hire vehicle (PHV).
Oct 22, 2019

Woman with involuntary vocalising medical condition given permission to bring judicial review over noise abatement notice

The High Court has granted a woman who suffers from a medical condition which results in her involuntarily vocalising sounds, words or phrases permission to bring a judicial review challenge over a council’s decision to serve her with a noise abatement notice.
Oct 22, 2019

Rights Watch (UK) launches judicial review of appointment of Lord Carlile as Independent Reviewer of Prevent programme

Charity Rights Watch (UK) has issued judicial review proceedings challenging the Home Secretary’s appointment of Lord Carlile as the Independent Reviewer of Prevent and what it described as “overly confined” terms of reference.


December 06, 2019

Independent adjudicators, the Prison Rules and implied powers

A recent Divisional Court judgment is of interest to prison lawyers but also to public lawyers as it deals with important points of law in relation to the interpretation of the Prison Rules and the "implied powers" principle, writes Geeta Koska.
November 29, 2019

Powers to control anti-social behaviour under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014

This guidance note provides a comprehensive and up to date overview of powers to control anti-social behaviour under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, Reform of anti-social behaviour powers (2014), Part 1 Civil Injunctions and Part 2 Criminal Behaviour Order (CBO).
November 29, 2019

Facing the future

Rowan Clapp looks at the key points from the Information Commissioner’s opinion on live facial recognition technology, law enforcement and privacy.
November 14, 2019

Spent convictions, underlying conduct and the 'fit and proper person' test

James Findlay QC and Riccardo Calzavara report on an Upper Tribunal ruling on spent convictions and the ‘fit and proper person’ test for holding a property licence under the Housing Act 2004.
October 29, 2019

Private landlords, electrical safety standard and implied terms

The path has been set for a new implied term that electrical safety standards are met. Elizabeth England sets out how the provisions will apply to private landlords and most private registered providers of accommodation.
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October 04, 2019

Exploring the limits of public authority’s liability for children

Duncan Fairgrieve and Jim Duffy, barristers at 1 Crown Office Row, examine the Supreme Court’s decision in Poole Borough Council v GN and another that the respondent local authority did not owe a common law duty of care to exercise its functions under the Children Act 1989 to protect the appellants, who were children of a family which it had housed, from harm at the hands of anti-social…
October 04, 2019

Taxi licences, hearsay evidence and risk assessment

A private hire driver has unsuccessfully appealed after a council refused to renew his licence following the receipt of anonymous hearsay evidence. Matt Lewin explains why.
September 13, 2019

Public Space Protection Orders, abortion clinics and buffer zones

The Court of Appeal has upheld the legality of the UK’s first ‘buffer zone’ outside an abortion clinic. Ranjit Bhose QC, Kuljit Bhogal and Tara O'Leary explain why.
September 06, 2019

Automated facial recognition, privacy and data protection law

The Divisional Court has found that police use of automated facial recognition was a justified privacy intrusion. Robin Hopkins sets out the key findings in a landmark case.
August 13, 2019

Responding to the 'Building a safer future' consultation

Andrew Millross sets out the key points from Anthony Collins Solicitors' response to the 'Building a safer future' consultation.
July 19, 2019

PSPOs and legal aid

Liberty has failed to secure legal aid for a challenge to a public spaces protection order. Kuljit Bhogal explains why.
July 05, 2019

Applying for without notice injunctions

Always make full and frank disclosure to the court when applying for a without notice injunction, writes Sian Evans.
June 21, 2019

Deprivation of liberty – the limits of the inherent jurisdiction

A High Court judge recently rejected the use of the court’s inherent jurisdiction to protect 17-year-old gang member. The Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Chambers explain why.
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May 31, 2019

Sharing data and law enforcement

The High Court has issued an important ruling on sharing data for law enforcement purposes. Alessandra Gettins, Hugh Giles and Andrew Latham look at the lessons for police forces and their partner agencies.
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May 10, 2019

Avoiding adverse costs orders

How can local authorities avoid adverse costs orders in the First-tier Tribunal? Robin Stewart sets out the lessons from a case where a council failed to revoke an emergency prohibition order over a property.
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April 18, 2019

Bermondsey Beer Mile appeal dismissed

A district judge has considered whether it was proper for a council, when deciding to refuse a licence varation, to take into account evidence of cumulative impact of a 'beer mile', even though the area might not be subject to a formal cumulative impact policy. Gary Grant analyses the ruling.
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March 25, 2019

Know the facts: Homes (Fitness for Habitation) Act

Neil Brand sets out the key considerations for local authorities and landlords arising out of the Homes (Fitness for Habitation) Act.
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February 22, 2019

London at night

Will London authorities buy into the London Night Time Commission report findings? Paddy Whur looks at its conclusions.
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February 08, 2019

PDRs and telephone kiosks

The High Court has clarified the extent of permitted development rights for telephone boxes. Saira Kabir Sheikh QC and Mark Westmoreland-Smith explain the significance of the ruling.
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October 19, 2018

A matter of discretion

Alexander Campbell considers the lessons to be learned from a High Court decision on a social landlord's appeal over the refusal to grant a possession order.