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A pre-eminent set for housing cases and highly sought after by social housing landlords, Cornerstone Barristers has an impressive team of practitioners who are experienced in the full range of social housing matters. Members of Cornerstone's team are particularly capable in cases dealing with complex issues such as community care, human rights and immigration. One source notes: "They are all exceptional in terms of their service - they go far beyond what you ask."
"The clerking is very efficient." "I almost exclusively use them for all my housing and civil litigation work, and this is partly because of their clerks." Elliot Langdorf is the senior clerk.
Talented advocate who is praised for his unwaveringly dedicated approach, regardless of whether he is handling high-profile cases in the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court or more routine County Court possession claims. His practice encompasses all areas of social housing law, including welfare reform, housing fraud and advisory work for registered providers. He is further known for his strength in handling disrepair claims. Lane also has a growing policy practice and is able to assist housing associations draft allocation and rent reduction schemes.
"His knowledge is exceptional, and his advocacy and written services have been consistently at a very high standard."
Recent work: Represented Salix Homes to enforce two possession orders against a tenant, both on grounds of rent arrears. A Court of Appeal hearing dealt with the issue of whether Salix was estopped from seeking and obtaining a second possession order when there was an earlier undischarged order.
Predominantly advocates on behalf of local authorities and housing associations. She offers expertise across all areas of housing law, and regularly handles cases relating to succession disputes, possession claims and unlawful eviction. Interviewees are particularly quick to highlight her tenacity in court. She is also a notable expert on homelessness law, and has acted in multiple major cases regarding the law in this area.
"She is excellent, approachable and down to earth. She goes over and above." "Her advice is very clear and concise. She is very user-friendly and experienced."
Recent work: Acted for Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council in a homelessness appeal in relation to an individual with a growing family and whether Section 11 of the Children Act added to the duties of the council.
Known particularly for his expertise in homelessness matters, he regularly makes successful presentations before the Court of Appeal. His broad client base includes a number of local authorities. Lintott also shows strength in possession proceedings and anti-social behaviour order applications.
"My go-to barrister for homelessness cases. He cuts straight to the issues and untangles them with ease and has expert knowledge of homelessness, with brilliant written arguments."
Recent work: Acted for the London Borough of Enfield in a Court of Appeal case which determined that a local authority has a continuing duty to house a person under the Housing Act even where that individual had been temporarily housed, and it could require an individual to move from one set of temporary accommodation to another.
Housing and administrative specialist who is praised for his "excellent" advocacy and adept representation of local authorities and social landlords at all levels of court and tribunal. His areas of particular expertise include possession proceedings, homelessness challenges and disrepair claims.
"His practical advice and advocacy services are always delivered to a very professional standard resulting in outcomes very much in the clients’ favour." "He is bright and pragmatic, friendly and well liked by clients. His preparation of cases is first rate and he left no stone unturned when searching for the right solution for my clients."
Recent work: Acted for Lewisham LBC in a homelessness appeal determining whether the County Court has jurisdiction to determine claims of alleged disability and indirect discrimination under the Equality Act 2010.
Specialises in defending local housing authorities and social landlords against public law challenges, offering particularly valuable insight into the housing implications of the Public Sector Equality Duty. She frequently appears in highly significant cases, often before the Supreme Court. Her social housing practice is complemented by her significant expertise in community care and immigration eligibility matters.
"She is fantastically thorough, very reasonable and professional and gets her point across very clearly."
Kelvin Rutledge QC
Highly experienced silk with a particular focus on matters concerning local government. He offers respected expertise in a range of cases, such as those involving homelessness allocation schemes and outer borough placements. He also makes frequent appearances before the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court. Rutledge complements his housing expertise with an impressive community care practice, and is able to act in a range of cases where the two spheres intersect. He also regularly provides counsel to local authority clients on issues of policy.
"A very fair and thorough advocate." "A real specialist who deals with difficult cases."
Considered an expert in areas such as anti-social behaviour, public law defences and the Equality Act. She is frequently sought out by housing clients for her insight and advice on major policy matters. Her impressive client base includes local authorities and housing associations. Bhogal's broad practice also encompasses community care and Court of Protection work.
"She is a great example of what a barrister should be. She is very professional not only in the way she acts for clients, but also with others at the Bar." "Kuljit Bhogal is an expert in the law governing anti-social behaviour and her much-thumbed book is a key point of reference."
Recent work: Successfully sought possession orders for Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council for two properties, each with a counterclaim for disrepair.
Matt Hutchings QC
Highly regarded, passionate advocate with a broad housing practice. He is known for his adept representation of local authorities, tenants and homeless applicants before all levels of court.
"His oral advocacy is impressive."
Offers top-quality advice to an array of clients, including local authorities and housing associations. He is also highly regarded for his direct access and pro bono work on behalf of tenants. Interviewees particularly note his adroit handling of homelessness applications and leasehold disputes, and highlight him for his work where housing and community care matters intersect. He is also known for his ability to handle unlawful evictions and complex disrepair claims.
"He is exceptional to use and provides an excellent service."
Recent work: Acted for Milton Keynes CC in a case concerning whether the local authority can change the locks on a property, rather than bring formal possession proceedings, where a mother has been given accommodation to help her child but not granted a tenancy.
Ranjit Bhose QC
Well-respected silk with a broad housing practice that encompasses possession actions, housing finance and large-scale regeneration schemes for local authority and housing association clients. He is particularly commended for his expertise in complex leaseholder issues and service charges. Bhose also regularly advises local authorities and associations on fire safety issues, and frequently appears at all levels of court, including the Upper Tribunal and Supreme Court.
"He's fantastic and really, really able. I am always interested in what he has to say and he is very good at managing a case."
Recent work: Acted for Hertsmere Borough Council in an appeal to the Court of Appeal which concerns the circumstances in which local authorities may ratify earlier decisions where there have been errors in the decision making.
Has a notable ability to handle complex possession proceedings. He is also frequently instructed in anti-social behaviour cases, disrepair claims and homelessness appeals. His impressive practice has seen him make several appearances in the High Court and Court of Appeal, often in leading cases.
"Riccardo is brilliant as an advocate. He is very user-friendly and incredibly professional and approachable."
Recent work: Acted for Hertsmere Borough Council in a homelessness appeal, in which the claimant questioned the local authority's use of an outside contractor for its homelessness function.
Talented junior who receives regular instructions in anti-social behaviour injunctions, homelessness appeals and possession claims. He is notable for acting in cases where the Equality Act and public law defences are raised. Kohli is highly experienced at tribunal level and has served as sole counsel in the Court of Appeal. His broad practice also sees him advising on fire safety and leasehold disputes.
"He demonstrates skills well beyond his year of call and has great authority in the courtroom."
Recent work: Acted on behalf of Metropolitan Housing Trust in an appeal regarding a flawed investigation into anti-social behaviour and whether the landlord had harassed the tenants by threatening eviction.
Junior with a strong reputation for his local government and social housing practice. He routinely undertakes housing work on behalf of local authorities and registered providers, and offers notable expertise across the areas of planning, regeneration and procurement. Beglan has considerable experience of appearing before the High Court and appellate courts, and is noted for his experience of judicial review procedures.
"He is able to formulate his case into an attractive argument." "He is bright and has a formidable and thorough approach."
Recent work: Acted for Chelmsford City Council in successfully securing a mandatory injunction against Travellers who had occupied a Green Belt site for housing purposes without the necessary planning consent.