Eligibility for housing assistance to be extended to ‘Appendix FM’ applicants

The DCLG has indicated that those granted Article 8 'leave to remain’ (and have recourse to public fund) will be made eligible for housing assistance under Parts VI and VII of the Housing Act 1996.  Dominic Preston and James Kirk (in Romans v Southwark LBC and SSDCLG) and Ben Chataway (in Alabi v SSDCLG) were instructed by Morrison Spowart to issue discrimination challenges in the High Court asserting that Regulation 5(b) of the Allocation of Housing and Homelessness (eligibility)(England) Regulations 2006 (SI 2006/1294) unlawful categorises such applicants as ineligibility for housing assistance. 


Currently those whose leave to remain is granted pursuant to Article 8 are only eligible for housing under regulation 5(b) if they were granted leave 'outside the immigration rules'.  Since 2012, most Article 8 applications for leave to remain are granted within the Immigration Rules (notably Appendix FM).  Despite the 2012 changes, a number of Article 8 applicants are refused leave 'within the rules' (often because they have a history of bad character) but are nevertheless granted discretionary leave outside the rules, for instance because to return them to their country of origin would be unsafe or disproportionate in the circumstances.  The applicants argued that those provisions were discriminatory and in breach of Articles 8 and 14 of the ECHR.


Having considered the arguments in Romans and Alabi, the secretary of state has acknowledged that there is a gap in the regulations that needs to be addressed.  The parties have agreed to stay both claims in the light of the Secretary of State's indication that forthcoming changes in the eligibility regulations are likely to confirm that the applicants are eligible for housing assistance.  Southwark have also agreed to house the applicants pending the enactment of the new regulations.  For further information you can contact Dominic Preston, Ben Chataway or James Kirk at Doughty Street Chambers or Anne Spowart and Ossie Sandalon at Morrison Spowart Solicitors.

« Back to listing

About cookies on our website

Following a revised EU directive on website cookies, each company based, or doing business, in the EU is required to notify users about the cookies used on their website.

Our site uses cookies to improve your experience of certain areas of the site and to allow the use of specific functionality like social media page sharing. You may delete and block all cookies from this site, but as a result parts of the site may not work as intended.

To find out more about what cookies are, which cookies we use on this website and how to delete and block cookies, please see our Which cookies we use page.

Click on the button below to accept the use of cookies on this website (this will prevent the dialogue box from appearing on future visits)