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Homelessness & Lettings Law & Practice
Conference 2009

Book NowHomelessness & Lettings
Law & Practice
Conference 2009

The unmissable conference for Local Authority and RSL personnel involved in assisting the Homeless and in the allocation of Social Housing

Programme details | Book Your Place | Download Conference Brochure (.pdf)

why you should attend

This is the conference to help you get to grips with all of the key developments in the field of homelessness and lettings. Book Now so that you can benefit from:

  • Guidance and insights on best practice
  • Updates on all the important legal cases and legislation
  • Practical tips and pointers
  • Updates on the latest Policy initiatives that will affect you
  • Questions and Answers sessions. Plenty of time has been allowed for questions so that you can raise your own concerns with the experts as well as benefiting from the experience of colleagues.

This year’s conference gathers together some of the country’s leading experts on Homelessness and Lettings. Delegates will benefit from their vast experience and extensive knowledge of the law, coupled with an explanation of the latest thinking on policy developments.

Andy Gale, special adviser, Preventing Repossessions and Homelessness at Communities and Local Government, gives the first presentation of the day with an invaluable update on Homelessness Policy developments. Andy is ideally placed to give insights into prevention of Homelessness problems and other key policy issues.

Liz Davies, barrister at Garden Court Chambers, is one of the country’s leading lawyers in the field of homelessness and lettings of social housing. In the first of two presentations, Liz will give a comprehensive review of the latest cases and other developments in determining the answers to the “threshold” questions as to when homelessness duties may be owed.

Jan Luba QC enjoys a national reputation as a specialist in the law, policy and practice of Homelessness and Lettings and will explain the law and best practice in relation to the performance of the duties that social housing providers have in relation to homeless applicants. His talk will include interim accommodation, developments in relation to the intentionally homeless, the performance of the full housing duty and much more.

It isn’t sufficient for social housing providers to make the right decision. Case law shows that the decision must have been reached after following the correct procedure and must be based on the correct criteria. Many providers have fallen foul of these requirements and had their decisions appealed, judicially reviewed or been subject to sanctions and adverse publicity by the Ombudsman. Dave Worth, Head of Housing at Wandsworth, a major social housing provider will offer you guidance on how to reach the right decisions and how to make those decisions less susceptible to challenge.

Lettings Policy is fast moving. The impact and effect of the Communities and Local Government’s Statutory Guidance in relation to Choice Based Lettings published last year is still being worked through. The session immediately after lunch will consist of a timely and comprehensive Lettings Policy Update presented by a representative from Communities and Local Government, and will include consideration of the practical impact of the new Code which will be of enormous interest.

Jan Luba QC’s annual review of legal cases and other developments in the field of Lettings has rightly been described as “unmissable”. Fully updated and comprehensive, this is a session which everybody working in this field will benefit from.

In her second presentation of the day, Liz Davies will address the increasingly common problems of housing non-UK nationals. This is a complex and challenging area and Liz is one of the country’s foremost experts. She has the knack of distilling the complexities of case law and legislation in a way that makes this topic understandable. She will explain the nature and extent of the duties owed to non-UK nationals by social housing providers in relation to housing and offer guidance on how best those duties can be discharged. In the context of depleting housing stock and increasing demand no social housing provider can risk not being on top of the relevant legislation and case law.

The conference concludes with a final opportunity for you to raise questions with the expert panel and to share in the experience of your colleagues in other organisations.

Conference Programme

Homelessness & Lettings Law & Practice


Registration and Refreshments


Chairman’s Introduction
Jan Luba QC


Homelessness Policy Issues Update: Balancing Prevention with Provision
Andy Gale

  • Responding to the economic downturn
  • Mortgage Rescue
  • Preventing homelessness
  • Reducing use of temporary accommodation
  • Tackling rough sleeping and overcrowding
  • Developing enhanced housing options services


The Key Homelessness Questions-Latest Developments
Liz Davies

  • Is the applicant homeless? What might the House of Lords decide in Aweys v Birmingham City Council (homeless at home) and Moran v Manchester City Council (women’s refuges)?
  • Does the applicant have priority need? Separated parents and shared residence orders considered in
    Holmes-Moorhouse v Richmond upon Thames LBC
  • Latest developments on vulnerability
  • Is the applicant intentionally homeless? Latest developments
  • Local connection: legislative amendments removing exemptions for the military.


Morning Refreshments


Performing the Homelessness Duties
Jan Luba QC

  • The duty to have a Homelessness Strategy: an essential tool or a waste of time?
  • The duty to inquire: what is required?
  • Interim accommodation: but for whom?
  • Performing the main housing duty: is it just ‘temporary’ accommodation?
  • Ending the main housing duty: 8 ways out!
  • Housing the intentionally homeless: but for how long?
  • Assessment, Advice & Assistance: the Cinderella duties.


Decision-making and Reviews: How to Avoid the Courts and the Ombudsman
Dave Worth

  • Making s.184 decisions - Getting it right first time
  • Taking s.202 reviews – the process including `minded’ letters
  • Decision letters - Best practice
  • Ombudsman complaints – roles, remits and remedies
  • Preparing replies, formal investigations and local settlements
  • Lettings - decision-making and reviews.




Lettings Policy Update
Communities and Local Government speaker


Lettings - Legal Cases and Other Developments:
An Update

Jan Luba QC

  • The local Allocation Scheme: how much detail is needed?
  • Eligibility criteria: keeping out the troublemakers
  • Priority for the reasonable preference groups: but how much priority?
  • Helping other applicants: transfers and under-occupiers
  • The new CBL Code: help or no help?
  • Moving from Allocation to Choice: handling transition
  • Finding the Holy Grail – a 100% lawful scheme.


Afternoon Refreshments


Housing Non-UK Nationals: Duties and Best Practice
Liz Davies

  • Overview of eligibility for persons subject to immigration control and persons from abroad
  • Latest developments on E.U. nationals: rights to reside for primary carers of school-age children considered in Ibrahim v Harrow LBC
  • The New Law on restricted persons and restricted cases.


Any Questions?
Speaker Panel


Close of Conference

Top | Book Your Place | Download Conference Brochure (.pdf)



Venue: London

Copthorne Tara Hotel, Kensington, London W8 | Get directions

Date: Thursday 30 April 2009

Price: £295 + VAT

SPECIAL OFFER: Third and Subsequent Delegates HALF PRICE. The cost effective way to get top quality training for your department. See Terms and Conditions

cpd accredited

This conference is CPD Accredited for 5 hours 20 minutes by The Solicitors Regulation Authority, the Bar Standards Board and ILEX

Who should attend?

  • Housing Options Team Managers and Officers
  • Homelessness Managers and Officers
  • Lettings/Allocations Managers and Officers
  • Housing Policy Managers and Officers
  • RSL Staff responsible for contracted-out homelessness or lettings work
  • Heads and Directors of Housing
  • In-house Social Housing Lawyers
  • Legal Advisers in private practice
  • Advice agency staff

Speaker Profiles:

Jan Luba QC, Chairman and Lead Speaker, Garden Court Chambers.
Jan has been described in Chambers & Partners Directory as “the leading QC for housing related public law matters” and as “a walking encyclopaedia of housing law.” He also enjoys a well deserved reputation as one of the country’s leading Housing Law trainers combining an in-depth knowledge with a real understanding of the practical problems faced by front-line homelessness and lettings teams.

Andy Gale, Special Adviser, Homelessness, Overcrowding and Worklessness, Communities and Local Government. Andy has vast Local Government experience, including, Housing Needs Manager at Harrow Council and prior to that he was in charge of Homelessness and Advice at Ealing Council. He is also the author of "The Local Authority Guide to Tackling Homelessness."

Liz Davies, Garden Court Chambers. Liz specialises in all aspects of
housing law, but has particular expertise in homelessness and allocation of social housing.

Dave Worth, Head of Housing Services, Wandsworth Borough Council, Dave has responsibility for all aspects of homelessness prevention, assessment, temporary accommodation and Housing allocations. With over 20 years experience, he has been involved in hundreds of reviews and dozens of appeals, most recently as the decision maker in Wandsworth v Dixon; the first reported case on applying the unacceptable behaviour test under Part VI.

download brochure

Homelessness & Lettings BrochureDownload



Don’t just take our word for it - Just look at what last year’s delegates said,

“Really useful day packed with facts and information”
Local Authority Housing Adviser

“Excellent conference-very informative and interestingly presented”
Local Authority Head of Accommodation Services

“Excellent as always”
London local authority Homeless Persons Manager

“Very impressed-informative and thorough”
Housing Options Manager

“As always, very informative and enjoyable”
Housing Advice Manager

“Excellent programme, really informative”
Lettings Manager

Lime Legal Limited
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87 Pickwick Road
SN13 9BY

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