Archive for June 2008
Oh dear, oh dear. That could have gone better.
I’m not going to go into great detail on the five separate judgments from the House of Lords in LB Lewisham v Malcolm  UKHL 43, but I do want to look at where it leaves us and what the problems are with the judgments.
The headline result [...]
Belated, I know, but this is the first chance I have had to really look at the judgment in Weaver (R) v London & Quadrant Housing Trust  EWHC 1377 (Admin).
Ground 8 and Legitimate Expectation
First the substantive ground of challenge – that the use of Ground 8 mandatory possession claims by L&Q Housing Trust amounted [...]
Landlords the length and breadth of the country will (or should) be celebrating the House of Lords decision in the leading case of Lewisham v. Malcolm, (discussed by me previously here) and the reversal of the previous Court of Appeal decision. This denied Lewisham a possession order on the basis that Mr Malcolm’s subletting [...]
LB Lewisham v Malcolm  UKHL 43
Court of Appeal thoroughly and unanimously overturned.
The reason for the treatment is the reason in the mind of the landlord, or one which can be imputed to them. So the landlord must be aware or be imputed to be aware of the disability, and the reason for the treatment [...]
Earl Cadogan and others (Respondents) v 26 Cadogan Square Limited (Appellants); Howard de Walden Estates Limited (Respondents) v Aggio and others (Appellants),  UKHL 44
Chapter II of Part I of the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 confers a right on “a qualifying tenant of a flat” to acquire a new long lease of the flat from his landlord. The question raised on these two appeals was whether the lessee of premises (such as a block of flats), which included property other than flats, could be a qualifying tenant of any of the flats comprised in those premises. This issue turned upon the proper construction of the 1993 Act, as amended.
In each of these cases, the whole (or most) of a self-contained building converted into a number of self-contained units, was let under a lease (“the head lease”) for 60 years at a ground rent. In Cadogan, the building had six storeys – the lower three were used as offices and the upper three consisted of a maisonette. In Howard de Walden, the five storeys of a building had been converted into self-contained residential flats – the upper three were subject to long underleases, and the lower two were let by assured short-hold tenancies.
In each case, the head lessee served notice on the freeholder pursuant to Chapter II of Part I of the 1993 Act (“Chapter II”) to acquire, in Cadogan, a new lease of the maisonette, and, in Howard de Walden, a new lease of the ground floor flat, and, subsequently, a new lease of the basement flat. In each case, the freeholder served a counter-notice denying the head lessee’s claimed right, contending that the head lessee was not “a qualifying tenant” of the flat concerned.
The County Court held that the head lessee was “a qualifying tenant” of the relevant flat. The freeholders’ appeals were heard together by the Court of Appeal which allowed both appeals. The head lessee in each case then appealed to the House of Lords.
The House of Lords held (unanimously) that the appeals should be allowed and the decision of the first instance judge restored in each case.
The House of Lords found (as per Lord Neuberger of Abbotsbury) that (1) as a matter of statutory language, it appeared clear that a lessee under a lease of property which included a flat can be a “tenant” of that flat for the purposes of Chapter II of Part I of the 1993 Act, irrespective of the nature or extent of the other property included in the demise; (2) in particular, there was no reason to exclude a lessee under a lease of a block of flats, or a lease which included property other than flats, from being a “tenant of a flat” for the purposes of Chapter II of Part I of the 1993 Act; (3) there was no good argument to the contrary based on the policy of the 1993 Act; and (4) nor was there a good argument to the contrary based on the alleged practical difficulties, inconsistencies or oddities resulting from this conclusion.
London Borough of Lambeth v Johnston  EWCA Civ 690 is an appeal to the Court of Appeal from a County Court s.204 appeal.
The brief facts – the Claimant applied to Lambeth as homeless in September 2004. He told the officer he had an alcohol problem Lambeth put him into temporary accommodation. In September 2005, [...]
C, R (on the application of) v London Borough of Lambeth  EWHC 1230 (Admin) is, in the end, mainly concerned with education, but there is quite a bit of interest to housing people.
The issue was the duties owed to the Claimant under s.23 and s.24 Children Act 1989.
The Claimant had been in care with [...]
Hanoman v London Borough of Southwark  EWCA Civ 624
Where a local authority landlord has failed to respond to a tenant’s notice in time under the Right to Buy procedure, the tenant can serve an ‘operative notice of delay’ under s.153A(5) Housing Act 1985. The effect of this notice is that the landlord must deduct from the purchase [...]
Jones v London Borough of Merton  EWCA Civ 660 addresses whether a tolerated trespasser’s liability to pay mesne profits ends when they leave the property or when they notify the former landlord that they have left.
Ordinary trespassers are only liable for mesne profits for the period of actual occupation of a property. Merton submitted that [...]
Ahad v London Borough of Tower Hamlets  EWCA Civ 606 was an application for permission to appeal from a s.204 appeal concerning a refusal of an offer of permanent accommodation. Tower Hamlets had discharged duty on the basis that the appellant had refused an offer of accommodation that was suitable and reasonable for him [...]