Lucie Barnes runner up in prestigious Alan Langleben Prize

Lucie Barnes, property litigation specialist at leading commercial law firm Baines Wilson, has been announced as runner up in the Alan Langleben Memorial Essay Competition by the Property Litigation Association.   The winners were announced at the Property Litigation Association’s annual conference at Keble College, Oxford.

For the competition, members were posed the question: “What is the most unjust and/or unfair decision/statute/doctrine or principle in property law?”   Lucie’s essay, which will feature in market leading news source, Estates Gazette, looked at why The Localism Act 2011 has become a perennial thorn in the side of social housing providers, local authorities and those regions craving the power of devolved financial capability.

As Lucie explains “It was hoped the Act was would create a more fluid and flexible housing market, where housing stock could be used more effectively.   However, the most pronounced failure of this act is shown by section 154 – a section that introduces the concept of flexible tenancies into social housing.  Far from protecting those that need it most, taking away lifetime tenancies leaves tenants with little if no security, protection or network.   Social housing providers themselves say flexible tenancies act as a barrier to mobility in the social housing market and that the legislation has failed to address the problem it was introduced to deal with.  In this, it is a legacy of the culture of the bedroom tax, universal credit and homelessness ignorance.  It is a lame duck and it should go.

“I’m delighted that my essay has been recognised.  I hope too that the Government will listen to legitimate criticisms raised by social housing providers and lawyers such as myself and look again at the Localism Act.

Read Lucie’s essay here. 

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