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London boroughs lose challenge over coroner holding night-time hearings

Six councils unsuccessfully ask High Court to ensure that coroner is disciplined for holding sittings at night

Law Society issues practice note on attendance at Children Act meetings
Chancery Lane issues important practice note on attendance of solicitors at local authority Children Act meetings

Independent person role well received, vexatious complaints falling: CSPL
There is some evidence to suggest that role of independent person in local government standards is generally well received and that vexatious complaints are falling, standards watchdog says. However, effectiveness of standards regime remains concern

County council fined £100k after data breach involving social care files
Council hit with £100,000 monetary penalty by Information Commissioner’s Office after social care files containing personal details of more than 100 people were found in disused building
MUST-READ FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT LAWYERS: Austerity budgets, cuts to statutory services and reports to members
In an age of austerity budgets, Paul Feild sets out the learning points following a recent High Court case involving cuts to funding of short breaks for disabled children. 
LGSS Law expands network with new office in Huntingdon
Social enterprise law firm, which is owned by three councils, opens new office in Huntingdon in response to increased demand for its services

MPs urge action on "significant" legal loophole in taxi licensing
CLG committee calls on Government to address “damaging and significant legal loophole” that allows taxis licensed by other local authorities to operate within Rotherham, even if drivers have had their application for Rotherham licence rejected. Committee also makes series of recommendations on use of interventions in local authorities

High Court quashes school closure decision over consultation flaws
Local authority mishandled its consultation on closing Welsh language school, High Court finds

Eritrean asylum seeker wins age assessment case in High Court
Social workers incorrectly assessed Eritrean asylum seeker as adult when he was in fact still minor, judge rules
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Combined authority chooses nine providers for legal panels
Sports bodies to re-tender £1-3m legal panel
District to appoint lawyers to advise on leisure centre outsourcing


Court of Appeal quashes permission for hydro-electric station on Thames
London borough must pay local hotel owner £55,000 in costs after losing judicial review over construction of hydro-electric station

Neighbourhood plan referendum halted after judicial review challenge
Neighbourhood plan referendum postponed after application for its judicial review was lodged

London borough uses Article 4 directions to protect 120 pubs
Wandsworth Council grants Article 4 Directions removing permitted development rights from 120 of its bars and taverns, urges other local authorities to follow suit

Council agrees to re-house disabled woman after Ombudsman investigation
London borough to re-house disabled woman and her family after errors were made in processing her housing application

Chancellor makes EU funding commitments but councils remain unconvinced
Philip Hammond seeks to end uncertainty over EU funding, insisting that key projects will be given green light

HHJ Lucraft QC named as new Chief Coroner of England and Wales
His Honour Judge Mark Lucraft QC appointed as new Chief Coroner of England and Wales, with effect from 1 October 2016

See all of our most recent news stories
TOP INTERIM ROLES: Senior Childcare Lawyer (West Midlands), Commercial Contracts Lawyer (Yorkshire), Litigation Lawyer (Cambridgeshire), Locum Homeworking Planning Lawyer (East of England) and Generalist Litigation Solicitor (East Midlands).

NEW DATE: St John's Chambers' Local Government Law Conference 2016 - Bristol - 12 October 2016. Speakers include Leslie Blohm QC, Kathryn Skellorn QC, Professor Roy Light and Peter Wadsley. Click here to see all training and events or click here to join the mailing list.

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Analysis on Local Government Lawyer

The pre-proceedings process
LexisPSL Local Government in partnership with Joy Hopkinson of London Borough of Lambeth Council explains the pre-proceeding process under the Public Law Outline (PLO) reforms to care proceedings.
Licensing fees and enforcement activity
Councils and other local authorities could face substantial bills for unlawful licensing fees if an Advocate-General’s opinion is followed by the European Court of Justice. Virginia Cooper explains why.
Unlawful profit orders
There have been substantial gains recovered by social landlords through the unlawful profit orders regime. Kuljit Bhogal provides a helpful review of their place in the sub-letting work of such landlords.

Amendment of permitted development prior approval conditions
A recent case opens the door for any developers unhappy with the conditions imposed on any permitted development rights prior approval decision to apply for their variation or removal. Caroline Waller and Laura Urch report.

Reporting child abuse
The Government has recently launched a consultation on new duties to report or act on child abuse and neglect. Peter Wake and Ken Slade look at the key points for local authorities.

Flexible working and indirect discrimination
Harmajinder Hayre reports on a recent Employment Appeal Tribunal case involving a claim of indirect sex discrimination brought by a teacher at a school for children with special educational needs.

State imputability, families and deputies
In a judgment from a case heard prior to the decision in Re SRK but delivered afterwards (without referring to it) Senior Judge Lush has weighed into the debates about state imputability in the context of Article 5. Alex Ruck Keene analyses the judgment.

Penny wise and pound foolish
Helen Prandy examines the issues raised when procurement claimants seek to avoid paying large court fees for bringing proceedings.

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

Adult Social Services: Accommodation under the Care Act and the General Power of Competence
A High Court judge recently considered issues around the Care Act and the General Power of Competence. David Owens, Judith Barnes and Trevor Watt question the ruling.

Adult Social Services: The Care Act, the need for 'care and support' and accommodation
Lee Parkhill considers a recent High Court ruling on accommodation and the need for 'care and support' under the Care Act.

Adult Social Services: False imprisonment, causation and damages claims
A recent Supreme Court ruling provides a reminder of the importance of causation in damages claims for false imprisonment. Eirwen Pierrot explains its relevance to mental health law and the Court of Protection.

Children: Court judgments and the Ellie Butler case
The Court of Appeal recently ordered the release of a court judgment in proceedings relating to the sibling of Ellie Butler. David Hart QC looks at its reasoning.

Children: The 'Named Persons' Scheme – when protecting wellbeing is totalitarian
The Supreme Court last week allowed an appeal over the Scottish Government's controversial 'Named Persons' scheme for the wellbeing of children. Allan Norman explains why.
Children: Support for NRPF families
The Court of Appeal has considered a number of issues around families designated as having no right of recourse to public funds but still supported under section 17 of the Children Act. Jonathan Auburn reports.
Education: Schools, sport and the duty of care
A recent Northern Ireland case provided guidance on, and a useful review of the case law in England and Wales relating to, the duty of care owed by a school to its pupils when participating in sport, write Bruce Ralston and Richard Rowe.

Education: Checks on academy governors
Katie Michelon sets out the safeguarding checks that academies are required to carry out on their governors.

Education: Term time holidays – what you need to know!
In the aftermath of the High Court's recent ruling, where are we when it comes to prosecutions for failing to ensure regular attendance at school? Richard Freeth explains.

Education: Education, health and care plans
LexisPSL Local Government, in partnership with Anita Chopra and Chris Barnett of Match Solicitors set out a checklist for moving children from statements to the new regime of education, health and care plans.

Employment: Disclosing safeguarding risks
A recent Court of Appeal ruling on whether the dismissal of a head teacher for failing to disclose a potential safeguarding risk was fair will be of interest to schools, local authorities and other bodies concerned with safeguarding issues, writes Morris Hill.

Governance: Consultation in austerity 2016: a practical guide
Paul Feild of Thurrock Borough Council provides a practical note on consultation procedure for local government practitioners and gives advice on how to carry out consultation which should be resilient to challenge.

Governance: What now for trust ports?
Lara Moore examines the key findings and recommendations from the Department for Transport’s trust port study.

Healthcare: Serious untoward incidents
Simon Cheverst considers some of the lessons that can be learned from the Southern Health case.

Healthcare: Super partnerships
Ross Clark looks at the rise of GP 'super partnerships', the benefits they bring and the legal issues that need addressing.

Housing: Housing applicants and unacceptable behaviour
Christopher Baker analyses a recent Administrative Court decision on a council's practice of disqualifying applicants guilty of unacceptable behaviour.

Housing: Eviction for growing cannabis
The Court of Appeal has clarified when it is reasonable to evict a tenant guilty of growing cannabis. Thomas Djan-Krofa reports on the court's ruling and its guidance on suspended possession orders.

Housing: Housing allocations, priority points and minimum thresholds
A High Court judge recently analysed a London borough's use of a minimum threshold of priority points in its bid to manage demand for housing. Christopher Baker and Richard Granby explain the ruling.

Information Law: Public authorities and surveillance
The Office of Surveillance Commissioners has published its annual report. Steve Morris sets out the key issues for public authorities.

Licensing: Illegal workers and premises licences
Does being caught with illegal workers necessarily mean that a premises licence will be revoked on review? Paddy Whur reports.

Licensing: Licensing Act 2003 appeals: is JR available if time is short?
Can judicial review be used to get a quicker decision than appealing to the Magistrates’ Court in a Licencing Act 2003 case? What are the obligations on a sub-committee in terms of reading supporting documentation? Josef Cannon reports.

Licensing: Abuse of process in licensing test purchasing
Paddy Whur looks at the case of East Riding of Yorkshire Council against Dearlove and the parameters for test purchasing of licensed services.

Licensing: Using cumulative impact policies
Councils should be wary of the unintended consequences of cumulative impact policies, writes Paddy Whur.

Litigation: Proof of fraud and unravelling settlements
The Supreme Court has ruled that proof of fraud previously suspected can unravel the finality of a settlement. David Williams, Andrew Parker and Catherine Burt analyse the judgment.

Litigation: Costs in abuse claims
Abuse cases need to be dealt with sensitively and compassionately but both parties still need to ensure that costs are proportionate. Laura Broadhead reports on a recent ruling.

Litigation: County Court "costs only" appeals
David Lintott reports on three cases in which applications for permission to appeal against a costs order were heard together by the Court of Appeal to establish the correct destination of such appeals.
Planning: The scope of the 'Murfitt' principle
The Court of Appeal has given guidance on the scope of the ‘Murfitt’ principle. Saira Kabir Sheikh QC and Ned Westaway explain the ruling.

Planning: The Crown Jewels Footnote
Philip Robson analyses an important High Court ruling on the operation of paragraph 14 of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).

Procurement: Voluntary transparency notices
Is a voluntary transparency notice published in the OJEU? How in practice is this distinguished from the OJEU notices that are published in advance of a procurement process? The LexisPSL Public Law team report.

Procurement: Reservation of public contracts
What is the interrelationship between regulations 20 and 77 of the Public Contract Regulations 2015? The LexisPSL Public Law team analyse the reservation of public contracts.

Procurement: Introduction to concession contracts procurement
LexisPSL Local Government in partnership with Walker Morris explain the new process for concession contracts procurement by contracting authorities and utilities under the Concession Contracts Regulations 2016, SI 2016/273.

Procurement: Open book contract management
The Government has issued a policy note on the use of open book contract management. Louise Bennett explains what is involved.

Procurement: What does Brexit mean for procurement?
What is in store for public sector procurement? Jonathan Parker considers the implications of last week's Brexit vote.

Procurement: Operating a Dynamic Purchasing System
In the third article in a series on dynamic purchasing systems, Susie Smith looks at the process for award of contracts under a DPS, the issue of reviewing suppliers' suitability for continued membership, and remedies.

Procurement: Competitive dialogue for local authorities: basic principles
Having been involved in six Competitive Dialogues including the Kent County Council Back Office Procurement, Adeola Sonola draws on her experience and examines the issues involved in a CD process, giving practical tips on how to ensure a successful outcome.

Projects: State aid anyone?
What does the EU referendum result mean for state aid? Paul McDermott and Rebecca Rees explain.

Property: Pubs as Assets of Community Value
Battles have raged over attempts to convert Assets of Community Value-listed public houses to dwellings. Christopher Cant reviews the key rulings.

Property: The Supreme Court on disrepair
The Supreme Court recently reversed a disrepair decision where a tenant in a block of flats tripped on an uneven paving stone as he was taking out his rubbish. Angela Piears reports.

Property: How can a right of way be simultaneously continuous and non-continuous?
A recent Court of Appeal case concerning claimed rights of way over the defendant’s land raises some nice points in respect of easements, writes Peter Petts.

Property: Lease termination – The devil in the dilapidations detail
Dilapidations disputes are no new creation. Yet so often we find that creative arguments advanced by either party cause these disputes to run their course and end up before our Courts – incurring significant cost for both parties which often outweighs the value of the claim write Amy Rudrum and Aaron Macauley

Property: The Upper Tribunal on Ft-T Rule 13 costs
The Upper Tribunal has released a long awaited decision on Ft-T Rule 13 costs, Hardwicke reports.

Property: Further development of the Asset of Community Value regime
Christopher Cant reviews the latest judgments on the application of the Assets of Community Value regime.

Property: How to surrender a lease
It is not always clear whether or when a lease has been surrendered by operation of law. Actions, rather than words, matter, so it is crucial for both landlords and tenants to realise the implications of their conduct, writes Elizabeth Thompson.

Property:  Of palm trees and a Chancellor’s foot
The Upper Tribunal has considered – in a service charges case involving a London borough – the concept of issue estoppel. Alastair Redpath-Stevens analyses the judgment.

Regulatory: Models of building control provision
Helen Randall discusses legal issues related to alternative models of building control provision.

Transport: What now for trust ports?
Lara Moore examines the key findings and recommendations from the Department for Transport’s trust port study.
Name Price (ex-VAT)   Description
CIL and Planning Obligations £0.00 This presentation considers the past, present and future of the Community Infrastructure Levy in the light of forthcoming reforms to the regime.
Bringing Forward Development £0.00 Will forthcoming changes to the NPPF, permitted development rights and the Housing and Development bill shift power towards or away from Local Planning Authorities?
Old and New Means of Development £0.00 This course looks at the various measures being introduced by the Housing and Planning Bill to make development happen beyond the conventional planning permission system.
The LLG Competency Framework £0.00 To assist local authority solicitors to comply with the new CPD regime, the Lawyers in Local Government group has produced a new competency framework. Helen McGrath, Development Officer for LLG, outlines the main features of the framework and explains how
Neighbourhood Planning: A Legal Perspective £0.00 John Pugh-Smith and Daniel Stedman Jones look at how lawyers can square the circle of greater localism in the planning system and the need for more housing and infrastructure development.
Housing and Local Plans £0.00 Peter Village QC and Rose Grogan analyse the key features of the Housing and Planning Bill and outline some of the problems and pitfalls created by Local Plans as identified by recent case law.
Human Rights, the Equality Act and Social Housing £0.00 This course looks at the arguments faced by public authorities and social landlords when faced with claims based on the Equality Act 2010 or the Human Rights Act 1998 and outlines some of the defences and tactics available to defend them.
Social Housing Eligibility Update 2015 £0.00 This course looks at which groups of people subject to immigration control are and are not eligible for social housing in the light of changes to welfare and immigration rules and recent case law.
Possession Claims Update 2015 £0.00 This presentation provides an update on new housing legislation, regulation and case law before going on to look at the issues faced by social landlords as the first flexible tenancies granted under the Localism Act 2011 begin to expire.
Local Government Law Update 2015 £0.00 Recorded in April 2015, leading barrister Richard Clayton QC outlines and analyses the key local government cases of the preceding 12 months across a range of disciplines. Includes a comprehensive downloadable paper.
The Commercial Council £0.00 Michael Mousdale and Bradley Martin provide a practical and legal guide for council officers and lawyers looking to establish local authority trading companies.
Information Law Update 2015 £0.00 Steve Wood, Head of Policy Delivery at Information Commissioner’s Office, outlines and discusses the implications of some of the key developments surrounding Freedom of Information, the Data Protection Act and the Environmental Information Regulations.
FOI and Data Protection Update 2016 £0.00 This presentation reviews the main changes in the past 12 months in the fields of Freedom of Information and Data Protection, with an extended look at Monetary Penalty Notices and an overview of the latest developments in relation to property search charg
Social Housing Fraud £0.00 This presentation identifies the main types of social housing fraud committed, the remedies available to tackle it and provides guidance on which are most suitable for particular types of fraud.
Governance and Monitoring £0.00 This presentation focuses on four topical areas of local authority governance: employee surveillance (including on social media), decision-making (pecuniary interests, bias, and committee make-up), whistleblowing and the counter-terrorism Prevent duty.
Managing Cuts Lawfully £0.00 This presentation looks at how legal challenges to decisions resulting from budget cuts can be avoided, mitigated and defended, focusing on the two grounds of challenge which appear most frequently unlawful consultation and breach of the PSED.
Homelessness Update: Vulnerability and Intentionality £0.00 This presentation highlights and analyses the landmark decisions of the Supreme Court in determining “vulnerability” under the Housing Act 1996 and whether somebody has made themselves intentionally homeless.
The Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act : One Year On £0.00 A little over a year on from its implementation, this presentation looks at the effect of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014. This short presentation focuses on the use of the new civil injunction powers and Criminal Behaviour Orders (
Housing: Key Developments in 2015 £0.00 Ranjit Bhose QC, Dean Underwood and Tara O’Leary present an update on key developments in housing law, focusing on recent changes to the right-to-buy regime, judicial alterations to allocations policies and welfare reforms.
Implementing the Care Act: Legal issues for local authoritie £0.00 This presentation looks at potential consequences of a number of key aspects of Care Act 2014 and outlines how local authorities can avoid or mitigate the potential issues it creates.

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