Essex obtains alternative business structure licence as Thomson retires
Essex Legal Services secures ABS licence from Solicitors Regulation Authority, in the same month that Philip Thomson, its long-serving director, retires from the practice
London borough faces legal action over proposed closure of respite facility
Ealing Council threatened with legal action over proposals to close respite care facility for young people with complex disabilities
Easterbrook to take over from Evans as senior partner at law firm Bevan Brittan
Joanne Easterbrook is to become senior partner at Bevan Brittan in May, with Bethan Evans returning to local government client work full time after four years in role
High Court declares town council ward election void over nomination issues
Judge holds the election of three town councillors in Cheshire to be void after it emerged that their nominations were defective
Supreme Court to hear case over refusal of final offer of accommodation
Supreme Court agrees to hear appeal in case where woman rejected council's final offer of accommodation on grounds of psychological distress
Supreme Court to rule in foreign national child and adoption case
Judges to rule next week whether two children born in England to Hungarian parents should be adopted in England without the consent of the parents or whether the care proceedings should be transferred to Hungary
Guidance on s. 20 Children Act amid fears councils could misinterpret law
Cafcass, Association of Directors of Children’s Services and ADSS Cymru have published guidance aimed at clarifying expectations on local authorities for children looked after under s. 20 of Children Act 1989
Shami Chakrabarti to join 39 Essex Chambers as door tenant
Former director of Liberty to re-join 39 Essex Chambers as door tenant with immediate effect (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
MORE NEWS STORIES....
EM LawShare secures 100th member as Coventry signs up
Coventry City Council becomes 100th member of EM LawShare consortium
Three London housing associations agree merger plan
Three major London housing associations unveil plans for merger that would create combined organisation managing more than 135,000 homes and with proposals to build another 100,000
Councils reached 17,000+ settlement agreements in five years: report
Councils in the UK agreed 17,571 settlement deals between 2010 and 2015, with many of those agreements containing confidentiality clauses, it is reported
Councils and health boards in Wales required to form statutory partnerships
Councils and health boards in Wales are to be required to come together in new statutory partnerships to drive integration, innovation and service change, under social services laws that came into force this week
Major social housing group combines five organisations into one body
Social housing group that manages more than 35,000 homes in North of England has combined five of its organisations into one body
IT practitioners urge councils to review info governance ahead of changes
Group representing IT practitioners in public sector urges councils to review their information governance arrangements ahead of impending changes to data protection and online privacy laws
Local risk assessments requirement for gambling operators comes into force
All land-based gambling operators must set out how they will reduce risks in their local area such as being located near a school or homeless shelter, under new regulations that have come into force this week
See all of our most recent news stories
ON THE MARKETPLACE
Walker Morris promotes head of housing litigation to partner
New articles on Local Government Lawyer
Gagging orders and settlement agreements
What are the rules on gagging orders and settlement agreements in local government? Athelstane Aamodt explains.
Changes made to the Care Act Guidance
Jonathan Auburn highlights the key changes that the Department of Health has made to the Care Act Guidance.
Sustainable development and heritage assets
A Planning Court judge has given guidance on the interaction between the presumption in favour of sustainable development and the restriction on development affecting heritage assets. Brian Hurwitz analyses the ruling.
The latest on 'Pay to Stay'
The Government is pressing ahead with its controversial 'pay to stay' policy in social housing. John Murray looks at the latest development.
McGeown, Young and slippery bridges
Tom Danter reports on the successful defence of a claim brought against a local authority after the claimant slipped on a wooden footbridge.
The LGA on licensing fees, public health
The Local Government Association has responded to a recent Institute of Alcohol Studies report on the Licensing Act 2003. Paddy Whur examines what they had to say.
ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY
Government challenges to industrial action
The High Court has ruled that in a dispute involving sixth form college employees, the Government may challenge the validity of industrial action. Paul McFarlane reports.
Criminal records disclosure
Nicola Bennison and Trish D’Souza report on a recent successful judicial review challenge against the criminal records disclosure scheme.
CORNERSTONE ON....The practical guides - now you can have their skills with you, even when they're not.
The latest blogs...
Housing in NSIP clause passes the Lords unscathed
by Angus Walker
What with all the excitement about the National Infrastructure Commission and the Budget, the Housing and Planning Bill has been somewhat overlooked, but it has been slowly chugging its way through Parliament.
Catch-up on recent articles on Local Government Lawyer and Public Law Today:
Adult Social Services: Case Management Pilot published
The draft Court of Protection case management pilot has been issued. The CoP team at 39 Essex Chambers
set out the key points.
Adult Social Services: Whose call?
Alex Ruck Keene
analyses where decision-making responsibilities lie – and the role of social workers – when it comes to powers of attorney, care homes, best interests and deprivations of liberty.
Adult Social Services: “I reasonably don’t believe you”
looks at the issues when local authorities consider refusing social care support on credibility grounds.
Children: Section 17 and Child Arrangements Orders
sets out some practice points arising out of a recent case involving section 17 and Child Arrangements Orders.
Children: Section 20 of the Children Act 1989 – local authority duties
LexisPSL Local Government
and Claire Cousin
outline a local authority’s duty to provide accommodation to children under section 20 of the Children Act 1989, identifying the challenges a local authority may face including parental consent and capacity.
Education: School closure consultation
The High Court has rejected a legal challenge to a Welsh council’s plans to close a secondary school. James Goudie QC
Education: The OIA and judicial review
, Deputy Adjudicator, sets out ten principles from ten years of legal challenges involving the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education. (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
Education: Academy sponsorship details and FOI
A recent case in the First-tier Tribunal has served as a pertinent reminder that certain information relating to the funding of academies may be disclosed under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Richard Auton
reports. (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
Employment: Knowledge of an employee's condition
analyses an Employment Appeal Tribunal ruling in a case which looked at the impact of an employer's knowledge of an employee's condition on disability discrimination.
Employment: Reasonable adjustment after Griffiths
analyses a significant Court of Appeal ruling on the correct comparator in a disability claim.
Employment: Caring for your carers
The Supreme Court has handed down an important decision in the case of the duties employers owe to employees working outside in areas over which they have no control. Steven Conway
looks at the impact of the ruling.
Governance: Article 8 and decision-making
Two recent decisions demonstrate the reach, applicability and importance of Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights in terms of the functions and decision-making of public bodies, write Peter Wake a
nd Nick Peel
Governance: Is your Constitution due a health check?
With Annual Council only a few months away, now is the time to be checking your authority’s constitution, write Judith Barnes
and Frances Woodhead
Healthcare: A human rights cautionary tale?
A recent High Court judgment involving claims against an NHS trust and an ambulance service dealt with the legal test for liability, causation and victim status. Francesca O'Neill
reports on the outcome. (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
Healthcare: Corporate manslaughter and public bodies
The first prosecution of an NHS Trust for corporate manslaughter collapsed. Tracey Longfield
and Colin Moore
explain what the case tells us. (ON PUBLIC LAW TODAY)
Housing: Declaring a property as an HMO
A local authority has won an Upper Tribunal appeal after its declaration that a property was a house of multiple occupation was revoked by the First-tier Tribunal. Harriet Holmes
Housing: The mandatory ground post Akerman-Livingstone
One year after the Supreme Court ruling in Akerman-Livingstone
, whither the ‘new’ mandatory ground for possession? Toby Huggins
Housing: Extending the local connection requirement
looks at the extension of the "local connection" requirement to four years for homeless applicants.
Housing: Enforcement of possession orders
looks at the issues raised by enforcement of a possession order by High Court writ rather than County Court warrant.
Housing: What now for selective licensing?
examines the latest developments in relation to selective licensing, including the Government's ‘20/20 rule’ and the end of borough-wide schemes.
Housing: Housing cases of interest
sets out the recent housing cases of interest over the last three months.
Information Law: FoI - how to recognise a vexatious request
considers the approach public bodies should take towards dealing with vexatious freedom of information requests.
Information Law: Personal data and politicians’ names
The Upper Tribunal recently ruled that, following an FOI request from a journalist, a council should disclose the identity of councillors who had failed to pay council tax on time. Julian Milford
examines the ruling.
Licensing: Closing licensed premises
What are the practical implications for closure of premises with the powers created in the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014? Paddy Whur
Licensing: Step changes proposed to summary reviews
and Josef Cannon
consider the implications of the recently proposed changes to the Summary Review procedure in the Licensing Act 2003.
Litigation: Mind your step: When is a hazardous staircase not a defective staircase?
The Court of Appeal recently handed down a judgment which serves as an important reminder that a landlord’s duty to repair does not extend to improving a property so as to make it safe. But what other implications does the decision have for both residential and commercial landlords alike? Steven Conway
shares his views.
Litigation: Infrequently used highways and dangerousness
The Court of Appeal has handed down judgment in a case that clarifies the test for dangerousness in respect of defects on infrequently used highways, writes Lucy Stranney
Litigation: The Supreme Court on vicarious liability
Two important Supreme Court judgments concerning vicarious liability were handed down last week. Kate Richmond
Management: Selling your services
deals with the question of what is permissible under the SRA's Handbook and the Legal Services Act 2007 for those local authorities looking to sell their services more widely.
Planning: A growing reluctance to quash?
analyses a recent trend amongst the judiciary not to quash planning permissions, even where there has been an acknowledged legal error.
Planning: The correct interpretation of the NPPF 14 'Algorithm'
Jerry Cahill QC
and James Corbet Burcher
report on a developer's successful s288 defence to a challenge brought by a council in the Planning Court.
Planning: Discarding a Core Strategy requirement
The High Court has recently ruled that discarding a recent Core Strategy housing requirement was lawful. Christopher Young
Planning: NPPF 14 and sustainable development
A High Court judge has considered the application of paragraph 14 of the National Planning Policy Framework. Richard Honey
sets out the key findings.
Planning: Clarity at last on 'relevant policies for the supply of housing'?
reports on a Court of Appeal ruling described as of “critical importance to national planning throughout the country”.
Planning: Two into one….
Is it lawful to charge the Community Infrastructure Levy by treating two planning permissions as a single planning permission? Christopher Cant
analyses a recent High Court ruling.
Procurement: The new procurement rules - one year on
New procurement rules were introduced with much fanfare a year ago. Alison Walton
, Tim Dennis
and Victoria Fletcher
examine their effect.
Procurement: Wrangling with TUPE in procurement documents
and John Houlden
analyse the issues raised for bidders and purchasers by TUPE in procurement.
Procurement: The digital agenda
sets out the key issues for public bodies looking to exploit the opportunities for collaboration and innovation provided by the digital agenda.
Procurement: Plus ça change…
and Tom Benjamin
give five reasons why Brexit is unlikely to spell the end of procurement regulation in the UK.
Projects: Sweating your assets
How can local authorities get more from their assets without selling off the family silver? Owen Willcox
Projects: State aid - beware compound interest!
A recent case from the European Court of Justice (CJEU) serves as a useful reminder of the risks of getting state aid wrong and the consequences of a recovery order, writes Robert Prater
Property: Dealing with mistakes in registered land
examines a recent High Court case involving a London borough and the mistaken inclusion of a basement within the registered title for a ground floor property.
Property: Legal costs and service charges
When it comes to the recovery of legal costs as a service charge, what has changed since the Supreme Court ruling in Arnold v Britton? Howard Lederman
Regulatory: Game of drones – the law
examines the issues that local authorities may face as a result of the use of drones.
Regulatory: Contaminated land - one to watch
Stephen Tromans QC
and Victoria Hutton
provide an overview of a Part 2A Inquiry concerning a remediation notice served by a local authority.
Transport: TfL and roads in the capital
A High Court judge has ruled on a dispute over the extent of Transport for London’s interests in London’s roads. Charles Banner
reports on the outcome.
|Neighbourhood Planning: A Legal Perspective
||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
||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
||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
||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
||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
||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
||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
||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
||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
||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
||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
||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.