The Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government published a call for evidence in November 2018 stating that: ‘The government wants to explore whether a specialist housing court could make it easier for all users of court and tribunal services to resolve disputes, reduce delays and to secure justice in housing cases’. The call for evidence focused on the private landlord possession action process.
The concept of a specialist housing court is attractive. However, examining the reasons why the issue has arisen and analysing the implications of moving all housing work to a new court reveals a number of unforeseen legal and practical problems.
The motivation for change appears to be coming from private landlord associations. There is no pressure from registered social landlords or mortgage lenders. Private landlord possession cases comprise a small percentage of the overall possession cases brought before the county court.