The protection of precious, but ever-dwindling, social housing stock calls for effective enforcement. Unlawful subletting (for profit) by council tenants with second homes is all too common. Many go even further, seeking to buy their abandoned, sub-tenanted, council ‘homes’ at heavily discounted prices under the Right To Buy scheme. The result? Less and less social housing for deserving families, more and more of whom must be placed in temporary accommodation at great expense by cash-strapped local authorities.

We advise and represent in prosecutions under the Prevention of Social Housing Fraud Act 2013 and the Fraud Act 2006 and are fully conversant with applications for unlawful profit and confiscation orders in these cases.

Meanwhile, we have seen the rapid growth of the private rented sector, bringing with it the risk of unscrupulous landlords, developers and agents who are willing to put profit before safety and security. The licensing scheme under the Housing Act 2004 is intended to address this problem, enabling local authorities to regulate and monitor housing conditions and to ensure, in particular, that the landlords’ favourite configuration – the house in multiple occupation – is safe and fit for human occupation.

We advise and represent in prosecutions under the Housing Act 2004 for operating premises without licences, breaching licence conditions or management regulations and failing to comply with improvement notices or prohibition orders. We also regularly act in appeals against financial penalties imposed by local authorities and have dealt with cases in the First Tier Tribunal, the Upper Tribunal and the Court of Appeal.


For more information please contact our clerks on 020 7404 1881 or via email to clerks@drystone.com. We will discuss your case with you and then arrange the right representation for your matter.

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