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England and Wales Court of Appeal (Civil Division) Decisions
You are here: BAILII >> Databases >> England and Wales Court of Appeal (Civil Division) Decisions >> Goodger v London Borough Of Ealing  EWCA Civ 751 (23 April 2002)
Cite as:  EWCA Civ 751
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IN THE COURT OF APPEAL (CIVIL DIVISION)
ON APPEAL FROM ORDER OF HIS HONOUR JUDGE OPPENHEIMER
(Brentford County Court)
Tuesday, 23rd April 2002
B e f o r e :
MR JUSTICE JACKSON
|- v -|
|LONDON BOROUGH OF EALING||Respondent|
Smith Bernal Reporting Limited, 190 Fleet Street,
London EC4A 2HD
Tel: 0171 421 4040
Official Shorthand Writers to the Court)
MISS KERRY BRETHERTON (Instructed by J R Jones of Ealing, London) appeared on behalf of the Respondent
Crown Copyright ©
"I hold that the failure of the Borough to give sufficient time for representations was a piece of procedural unfairness sufficient to vitiate the review decision, given the history of the matter."
"I decide [the case] on the basis that it would be quite unfair to allow the decision of the Borough to stand."
"My view is that that is not something I am prepared to embark upon. This court has not been asked to look at the housing file in detail in order to try to see whether the Borough is or is not likely to come to the inevitable conclusion that this man is intentionally homeless and that therefore, upon a further review, he would be bound to fail.
This matter looks unfair because the appellant has been deprived of something to which he is entitled. He may make submissions to the Borough which may appeal not only to the issue of law of intentional homelessness, but may make them exercise their discretion in a benevolent direction or may not. I could not possibly predict the outcome of further representations. The whole unfairness is that the appellant has not had, through his solicitors and counsel, sufficient time to consider the file and make representations before the review decision was given."
"However, the Council has a statutory obligation to consider the circumstances of your homelessness and to make a determination in accordance with the material facts of your case. The Council is satisfied that your action was deliberate being fully aware of your action, which resulted in the loss of your accommodation."
"The Council has also taken into account the general housing circumstances prevailing within the Borough of Ealing and in particular, the chronic shortage of housing available to this Council to meet both its statutory and non-statutory duties.
As a result of this decision, the Council accepts no legal responsibility under the provisions of the above Act to secure accommodation for you."
"So far as concerns the review we are advising our client that there is additional information which should be submitted to you concerning the possession proceedings as we are of the opinion that he has a reasonable chance of showing the authority that in fact the loss of his home followed an unfortunate set of events leading to the possession proceedings which might have been successfully defended by his then partner who was living in the property, paying the rent and had property rights by virtue of the Family Law Act 1996.
We shall submit further representations with regard to the s.184 decision once you have provided us with our client's file as requested on 2nd February 2001. As you are aware you must provide this in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and we ask that you do so as soon as possible because to fail to [do] so would infringe our client's right to a fair hearing. Clearly he should have an opportunity to consider the evidence before submitting further information and before any review decision is reached."
"Since the person affected usually cannot make worthwhile representations without knowing what factors may weigh against his interests fairness will very often require that he is informed of the gist of the case which he has to answer."