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When everyone has a home

028 9024 5640: Housing & Debt Helpline for Northern Ireland

Legal

Back in August, we brought you news of an important and potentially far reaching decision in one of our legal cases.  The case involved some of our Mortgage Debt Advice Service clients who had taken out Bank of Scotland mortgages.  Bank of Scotland appealed the decision, but has now withdrawn this appeal. 

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Repossession, Legal

When an adviser assists a client with a review of a negative homelessness decision, they will usually try to identify some error in the original decision making process.  The reviewing officer may acknowledge this error, yet decide to uphold the original negative decision.   In this situation, the reviewing officer must send the applicant a “minded to” letter.

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Case law, Legal

Advisers and solicitors working with rural clients affected by repossession may not be aware of the impact that certain planning clauses may have on their clients’ options.  Permission to build certain rural dwellings may have been granted subject to a clause requiring that the property be occupied by a farmer or farm worker.   This type of clause can help you negotiate with a lender who is threatening legal action to repossess the property.

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Repossession, Legal

Housing and welfare practitioners should note the following changes to social security legislation and update their resources accordingly. 

Habitual residence

There have been many recent changes to the rules around habitual residence recently.  Currently, only people who have been living in the Common Travel Area for at least 3 months can make a claim for Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA)

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Benefits, Minority Groups, Welfare Reform, Legal

Carmel Ferguson, Solicitor with Housing Rights Service discusses the possibility of using estoppel as a defence in possession proceedings. 

A recent query on our advice line raised the question of whether the principle of estoppel could be used as a defence to certain possession proceedings in the private sector.

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Private Tenancies, Practical tips, Legal

Carmel Ferguson, Solicitor with Housing Rights, looks at another successful homeless appeal carried out by Housing Rights Service.  As experienced advisers will be aware, an appeal can only be heard in the County Court if the case involves an error of law.

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Practical tips, Homelessness, Case law, Legal

In the second of our articles on the grounds for homelessness appeals our solicitor, Carmel Ferguson, reflects on a recent case concerning a Housing Executive tenant who was a lone parent with three children; the youngest aged 8 months.

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Homelessness, Legal

Earlier this year, Christopher McGrath, solicitor with Housing Rights Service, considered the increasing use of receivers and the impact on private tenants.

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Private Tenancies, Legal

Bank of Scotland held to account over bad practice with customers’ mortgage arrears.

A group of Bank of Scotland mortgage holders have won their High Court Case in Belfast over a problem relating to how the lender was dealing with their mortgage arrears. All three customers were facing possession action at the time and were represented by Northern Ireland advice charity, Housing Rights Service.

Chris McGrath LLB, Solicitor with Housing Rights, discusses a recent Housing Rights High Court Case where Bank of Scotland was found to be double billing customers in mortgage arrears.

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Money Matters, Repossession, Case law, Legal

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