Social Housing Landlords and Human Rights Act

August 8, 2009

This article is not about disability we have many clients who fall in to this category some may benefit from this article. Approximately two million tenants of Registered Social Landlords will now be protected by the Human Rights Act, this follows a case in the Court of Appeal. This came about from a case with Mrs Susan Weaver who the London Quadrant Housing Trust had tried to evict. She had lived in her flat since 1993. The claim by the Trust was that she had failed to pay her rent for eight weeks and sought an order to repossess. The lower courts had decided that the Trust had not breached her human rights, this was in respect of allocating, managing and terminating her tenancy, but all are to be seen as a public function. The Appeal Court support the previous court decisions and have effectively ruled that whilst a social landlord may evict a tenant for non-payment of rent, human rights must now be fully considered in making the decision.

Registered Social Landlords e.g. charities, companies or co-operatives that provide social housing, will now be treated as public authorities and therefore subject to the Human Rights Act. This means that the landlord will have give regard to a tenant’s human rights i.e. private and family life.