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Don't mIss: The Effect of Paragraph 49 of the National Planning Policy Framework - FTB Hereward Phillpot QC and Richard Honey will discuss this week's Supreme Court judgment concerning the effect of the paragraph 49 of the National Planning Policy Framework.

Supreme Court hands down key ruling on meaning of planning framework
Two local authorities lose appeals to Supreme Court, although judges did back councils’ interpretation of key part of National Planning Policy Framework. See also: Losing the local battle, winning the war? Round-up of reactions from lawyers involved in Supreme Court case

Council "did not have power to prosecute alleged fraud": Court of Appeal
Local authority did not have power to bring prosecution proceedings on behalf of Legal Aid Agency in relation to alleged legal aid fraud, Court of Appeal rules

Judge criticises council for acting unfairly in offering child for adoption
County council acted unfairly in offering child for adoption while acting in way that prevented mother from applying to revoke placement order, High Court judge rules

Supreme Court backs decision of reviewing officer over accommodation offer
Judges uphold reviewing officer’s decision that it was reasonable for refugee to accept offer of accommodation which she claimed reminded her of prison in Iran. Rare refusal to follow Strasbourg ruling
MUST-READ FOR HOUSING LAWYERS: The High Court upholds discriminatory housing allocations scheme
In partnership with LexisPSL Local Government, Alex Campbell, barrister at Arden Chambers, considers a recent case where a High Court judge considered a housing allocations scheme giving preference to those who work or volunteer in the community.
‘Freeman on the Land’ jailed for failure to pay council tax
Self-proclaimed ‘Freeman-on-the-Land’ who refused to pay council tax citing ancient laws has been sentenced to 40 days in prison and ordered to repay his debt

Decision of Communities Secretary quashed over "complete volte face"
Minister performed “complete and unexplained volte face” in his assessment of highways impacts of two proposals for development on site in Newmarket, Planning Court judge rules. Mr Justice Gilbart also said minister had failed to apply his own National Planning Policy Framework

Government Legal Service discriminated against job applicant with Asperger's
GLS discriminated against woman with Asperger’s syndrome, who had applied to join it, Employment Appeal Tribunal finds
DPS - Practice management software for local government including ABSs
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Weightmans unveils new structure and strategy, promotes nine to partner
Law firm puts in place new structure and five-year strategy following major strategic review, also appoints nine new partners (On Public Law Today)

High Court rejects challenge to implementation of Late Night Levy
Judge refuses to grant pub chain permission to bring judicial review challenge to decision of city council to introduce late night levy

Campaigners granted judicial review over permission for 4,000-home scheme
Campaign group wins permission to take controversial planning decision in Canterbury to judicial review

NW housing group to set up legal services panel worth £1m to £1.6m
Social housing group Torus to procure legal services framework agreement worth up to £1.6m over four years


Security services can approach ward of court without judicial consent: Munby
Security services do not need prior authority from courts to approach teenage ward of court, President of Family Division concludes

Campaigner to take legal challenge over fracking to Court of Appeal
Anti-fracking campaigner to take his legal challenge to Government’s decision to approve fracking in Lancashire to Court of Appeal

Leaders of two Suffolk authorities promote merger proposal
Leaders of Forest Heath District Council and St Edmundsbury Borough Council issue statement of intent on merger of their authorities

Welsh Government to protect position on industrial action and agency workers
Welsh Government unveils plans to amend draft trade union legislation in bid to protect current UK-wide position where agency workers are prevented from covering work of public sector employees during industrial action

See all of our most recent news stories

NW housing group to set up legal services panel worth £1m to £1.6m
Weightmans unveils new structure, promotes 9 to partner
LBLA sees membership grow to 20 local authorities
NW council to procure £607k in legal advice on litigated civil claims
Natural Resources Wales to set up parliamentary agents framework
County to set up framework agreement for insurance team advice

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DON'T MISS: Judical Review Conference: Developments in Public Law - 7BR. London, 6 June. Speakers include Sir Ross Cranston, the recently retired Lead Judge of the Administrative Court, and Richard Clayton QC, Head of public law at 7BR.


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This week's analysis

Funding the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards
A High Court judge has refused to interfere with Central Government’s alleged underfunding of the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards regime. James Goudie QC analyses the ruling.

Historic abuse claims: when is too late?
Six reported cases in three months give clear judicial guidance on when the court should/should not disapply the limitation period, argue Paul Donnelly and Samantha Chambers.

Conditions and PD rights
When does a condition restricting use remove permitted development rights? Roy Pinnock provides an update following a recent Court of Appeal ruling.

The Homelessness Reduction Act 2017: Challenges, Opportunities
The Homelessness Reduction Act 2017 provides a real opportunity for local authorities, writes Matt Lewin.

Correcting obvious errors in procurement bids
Does a contracting authority have an obligation to allow a bidder to correct an obvious error in its bid after the bid deadline has passed? Helen Prandy reports.

Translating bundles: who pays the bill?
The Court of Appeal has sought to clarify which party should pay the costs of translating documents served in family public law proceedings. Jake Richards examines its conclusions.

Costs in Court of Protection proceedings
Alistair Cantor considers a case which serves as a cautious reminder that the general rule that parties bear their own costs in Court of Protection proceedings, can be displaced in cases of unreasonable conduct.

At the limits of best interests
In a trilogy of judgments, a judge made findings of fact, determined mental incapacity, and made best interests decisions on behalf of a lady in her 60s with cerebral palsy. The Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Chambers reports.
BLOGS: Helping clients see the value in what you do
Should lawyers work within the brief or beyond the brief? Read Geoff Wild’s latest blog.

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Catch-up on recent articles on Local Government Lawyer and Public Law Today:

Adult Social Services: The Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards and inquests - a change in the law
As a result of a new legislative provision, the law on when inquests are required for people lawfully deprived of their liberty either by the DoLS or the Court of Protection has changed, with effect from 3 April 2017. John Glendening, Robin Constable and Ken Slade report.

Adult Social Services: Top ups for local authority and CCG fees
Jonny Landau examines the issues for care home providers, local authorities and clinical commissioning groups in relation to topping up fees.

Adult Social Services: Claiming within time
A High Court judge recently refused to extend the limitation period for a £100,000-£150,000 damages claim against a local authority over an alleged deprivation of liberty. The Court of Protection team at 39 Essex Chambers explain why.

Children: What is an ‘unrealistic option’ in the Re B-S context?
Ruth Cabeza analyses the issues raised by use of the phrase 'not a realistic option' in child care cases.

Children: Secure accommodation orders - children or young people placed in Scotland
English local authorities looking to place children in secure accommodation in Scotland have faced significant legal hurdles. Lucia Clark and Anna Forsyth explain how they have been overcome.

Children: Conduct powers over costs
A Family Court judge has recently handed down a key ruling for both local councils in respect of adverse costs orders in family and human rights litigation. Jessica Swanell reports.

Community Safety: Summary review, crime and disorder
The London Borough of Croydon recently defeated an appeal by a nightclub over reduced operating hours. Gary Grant explains why.

Community Safety: Before its time?
Can a local authority use the Anti-social Behaviour Crime and Policing Act 2014 in relation to incidents that occured before the Act commenced? Jonathan Manning reports.

Dispute Resolution: Personal injury and s.41(1A) Highways Act 1980
Andrew Clarke examines a ruling that a defendant highway authority was not liable for a claimant’s fall caused by ice on a footway which had not been treated.

Dispute Resolution: LASPO and recovery of success fees and ATE premium top-ups
Claimants have secured a huge win in the Supreme Court in relation to success fee and after the event legal expenses insurance premium recovery, writes Caroline Cousins.

Dispute Resolution: The effects of Merrix on a paying party
A recent High Court decision on costs has caused significant concern among paying parties, writes Emma Robinett.

Dispute Resolution: Repairing potholes: the Court of Appeal view
The Court of Appeal recently issued an important ruling on the approach highways authorities should take towards repairing potholes. Steven Conway considers the implications.
Dispute Resolution: Defending a claim for judicial review
This LexisPSL Public Law checklist, produced in partnership with Stephen Hocking of DAC Beachcroft highlights the key steps and considerations for defending a judicial review claim including preliminary assessment, acknowledgement of service and skeleton arguments.

Education: Getting schooled by the Supreme Court
The Isle of Wight Council, backed by the Government, recently won a high-profile appeal to the Supreme Court in a case on unauthorised school absence. Alexander Campbell analyses the judgment.

Education: The Upper Tribunal on Education, Health and Care plans
The Upper Tribunal has issued an important ruling on the education of young people with special educational needs. Tom Tabori highlights the key findings.

Employment: Robots for hire? AI and your workforce
A recent report revealed that approximately 30% of UK jobs could be automated within the next 15 years. Anne Palmer asks: what does the growth of AI mean for HR and your workforce?

Employment: The Supreme Court on indirect discrimination
In indirect discrimination the reason why is not relevant, the Supreme Court has said. Phil Allen looks at the implications of the ruling for employers.
Employment: Paint a picture - do you see an employee or a contractor?
Responsibility for determination of employment status under IR35 shifts from off-payroll workers to public bodies this week. Azhar Ghose analyses what is a significant shift for legal services.

Employment: When does notice of termination take effect?
The Court of Appeal recently ruled that where an employment contract is silent on the point, notice takes effect on actual receipt of the notice by the employee. Jenny Marley analyses the judgment.

Employment: Dismissal on grounds of ill health
Harmajinder Hayre looks at the lessons to be learned from a Court of Appeal ruling in an employment case which involved dismissal on the grounds of ill health.

Governance: The future shape of local authorities
What sorts of characteristics will the local authorities of the future display? Tiffany Cloynes reports.

Governance: English devolution
Richard Clayton QC analyses the complex scheme for the establishment of combined authorities under the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009 and considers the lessons from the Derbyshire County Council case.

Governance: Any port in a storm?
Local authorities that manage municipal ports need to consider a wide range of legal issues, writes Lara Moore.

Health: Deprivation of liberty on discharge: conditional discharge and CTOs
The Court of Appeal has handed down an important ruling in relation to deprivations of liberty, conditional discharge and community treatment orders. Louise Wilson analyses the judgment.

Highways: Outsourcing highway maintenance
James Fawcett examines the challenges of outsourcing highway maintenance in the new world of a ‘risk-based approach’.

Housing: Housing allocations and prioritising working households
A London borough has successfully defended its policy of giving priority in its housing allocation scheme to working households. Christopher Baker explains how.

Housing: Introductory tenancies and service of s.128 notices
The Court of Appeal recently considered whether a notice under s.128 of the Housing Act 1996 was valid. Sarah Salmon looks at the lessons from the ruling.

Housing: Human rights challenges and the social housing rules
The Court of Appeal has rejected a challenge under the Human Rights Act 1998 to the legislation governing the right to succeed to a secure tenancy. Ben Lask explains why.

Housing: Do actions speak louder than words?
Ben Gant examines a recent case where a city council arranged for a company to place 'guardians' in a former care home it owned.

Housing: HMO licence conditions and types of occupier
Can HMO licence conditions restrict occupation to a type of occupier, such as a student? Sarah Salmon reports on a recent Court of Appeal case.

Information Law: Local government GDPR readiness: good and will get better
Press reports on recent research by the Information Commissioner's Office into councils' preparations for the General Data Protection Regulation suggested a lack of readiness. Ibrahim Hasan goes behind the headlines.

Information Law: Yet another subject access judgment…
Anya Proops QC analyses the latest ruling on subject access requests, this time from the Court of Appeal.

Information Law: GDPR: goodbye notification, hello fees
Ibrahim Hasan looks at how the Government intends to ensure the Information Commissioner's Office is funded when the General Data Protection Regulation replaces the Data Protection Act.

Licensing: Licensing procedure – traps for the unwary
Ian de Prez examines some of the procedural issues faced by licensing sub-committees, and considers a House of Lords committee's proposal that their responsbilities be transferred to planning committees.

Licensing: Immigration and licensing applications
Paddy Whur sets out the new measures on immigration status and right to work and their impact on licensing applications.

Licensing: Winning at altitude
In what is thought to be a first, an appellant has succeeded in overturning a revocation decision of Westminster City Council on appeal, writes Philip Kolvin QC.

Licensing: Big changes afoot for summary licence reviews
Anna Mathias discusses significant changes to the summary reviews procedure which will come into force on 6 April.

Licensing: Streets ahead?
Trade objectors recently tested the definition of a “street” in a betting office application case. Andy Woods examines the outcome.

Licensing: When can premises be closed by the council or the Police?
Kuljit Bhogal surveys the powers available to close commercial premises that are the source of anti-social behaviour.

Management: Have your cake, eat it … and lose weight
Who do local authority clients prefer to work with, in-house lawyers or external law firms? Geoff Wild looks at the relative attractions.

Planning: Standing and substituting claimants in statutory planning appeals
A Planning Court judge has recently considered the approach taken to the issue of standing and the substitution of parties in statutory planning appeals. Sarah Sackman reports.

Planning: Permissions in principle and brownfield land
The Town and Country Planning (Permission in Principle) Order 2017 has come into force, allowing "permission in principle" to be granted for housing-led developments on brownfield land. Chris Bowes and Rebecca Roffe look at the key provisions and the effect the Order may have on developments on brownfield sites.

Planning: The Lancashire fracking challenge
The High Court recently considered a legal challenge to planning permissions granted by the Communities Secretary to a fracking company. Yaaser Vanderman explains the outcome.

Planning: The interpretation of conditions and restriction on GDPO
Alistair Mills report on a signification Court of Appeal ruling on the interpretation of a planning condition.

Planning: Demolitions in Conservation Areas
The High Court has decided what the judge described as a “small but important point” regarding the proper approach to the demolition of walls in Conservation Areas. Isabella Tafur explains the outcome.

Planning: Care needed in applying local green belt policies
The Court of Appeal has quashed planning permission for a power installation on metropolitan open land. Roy Pinnock explains why it disagreed with the High Court.
Procurement: A 'sufficiently serious' breach?
What is a 'sufficiently serious' breach justifying damages in a public procurement claim? Stephen Pearson examines a case that went all the way to the Supreme Court.

Procurement: Not having your cake and eating it
Andrew Millross highlights a recent opinion of the Advocate General about procurement obligations and the subsidiaries of contracting authorities.

Procurement: Clear as day – procurement and transparency
Jenny Beresford-Jones examines the latest version of the transparency principles for procurement issued by the Crown Commercial Service.

Procurement: Judicial review and procurement challenges
Is there a place for judicial review in procurement challenges? Colin Ricciardiello reports on an important case for contracting authorities.

Procurement: The essential activities test
A recent Court of Justice of the European Union ruling relating to the Teckal exemption will be of interest to contracting authorities considering alternative delivery structures and shared services, write Melanie Pears and Tim Care.

Procurement: A third way?
A recent Court of Justice of the European Union ruling suggests potential new avenues for public to public co-operation, write James Clayton and Mark Fitzgibbon.

Projects: Lessons from Edinburgh Schools PFI
A recent report into the Edinburgh Schools PFI contains important lessons for public sector clients, writes Louise Jobling.

Property: Service charges and third party contributions
The Court of Appeal has handed down an important ruling on costs, service charges and right to buy leases. Christopher Baker explains the outcome.

Property: Rateable values and the appropriate day
The Upper Tribunal recently considered the correct approach in ascertaining the ''appropriate day'' for calculating the rateable value of a house as part of an enfranchisement claim under the Leasehold Reform Act 1967 following the conversion of a building from two flats into one house. Richard Alford and Piers Harrison analyse the ruling.

Property: Borrowing money and investing in property
Is it lawful and, if lawful, is it prudent for the local authority to borrow money to invest in land? Alec Samuels analyses the issues.

Property: Refurbishment works and business rates
In a decision that will be welcomed by developers and property owners, the Supreme Court has held that a commercial property undergoing extensive refurbishment works was effectively exempt from business rates. Petra Billing and Ian Brierley report.

Regulatory: Environmental civil sanctions
The Upper Tribunal Administrative Appeals Chamber has given its decision on the first appeal to the Upper Tribunal against a stop notice served under Schedule 3 of the Environmental Civil Sanctions (England) Order 2010. James Maurici QC reports.

Regulatory: Prosecution of fly tipping
Jeremy Asher and Stephen Sadler examine the rise in fly-tipping incidents and the tools available to local authorities to tackle the issue.

Transport & Highways: Standards of highway maintenance
This LexisPSL Local Government article, produced in partnership with Nicholas Hancox of Nicholas Hancox Solicitors, examines how the quality of highway maintenance required of those responsible for it depends almost entirely on the expected ordinary traffic on the highway in question.
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