Edwards Duthie Shamash instructed by HLPA in its application to intervene in an urgent appeal relating to the stay of possession proceedings during the COVID-19 pandemic

The Housing Law Practitioners’ Association (“HLPA”) has been granted permission to intervene in the case of Arkin v Marshall, which will be heard by the Court of Appeal on Thursday 30 April 2020.

In response to the current Covid-19 pandemic, the Master of the Rolls issued an amendment to the Court rules on 27 March 2020 by way of Practice Direction 51Z (see this article on our website).  Practice Direction 51Z stays all possession proceedings for a period of 90 days from 27 March.  The Arkin v Marshall case concerns the questions of (i) whether the stay is lawful, and if so (b) whether in the absence of agreement between the parties, judges can lift the stay in individual cases thereby requiring the parties to comply with case management directions.

HLPA’s intervention sets out the results of an urgent survey of its members last week.  The responses from more than 40 housing lawyers describe the significant difficulties that would be faced by many tenants and homeowners if they had to engage with ongoing possession proceedings during the current lockdown.

James Harrison of Edwards Duthie Shamash has been instructed to act on behalf of HLPA and its Co-Chairs, Simon Mullings and Marina Sergides.  Martin Westgate QC and Daniel Clarke of Doughty Street Chambers have been instructed as Counsel.