“The ResPublica Report correctly identifies a disconnect between some housing associations and the communities around them, which are typically in more deprived areas. What the report has highlighted is two crucial points: firstly that these communities are bearing the brunt of the cuts and are most likely to have reduced public services, and secondly that they are the least enabled and equipped to respond to the changes effectively.

“The document shows that communities need effective support to really take advantage of their new rights under the Localism Act.  Fewer and fewer publicly funded organisations have the capacity or the engagement role to react appropriately, particularly with the loss of community contact points such as libraries and Citizens Advice Bureaus. With local authorities cutting back on expenditure and focusing on delivering only core services, housing associations have become one of the few organisations that are equipped to engage with and respond to wider community needs.

“As the core purpose of housing associations has changed rapidly over the last few years, the report encouragingly shows that a number of housing associations are moving toward becoming more holistic neighbourhood organisations rather than just providers of housing. It is essential that national policy such as the Public Service (Social Value) Act 2012 expands its remit to cover this sector, meaning that housing associations that already apply its principles are acknowledged, and those that as yet do not are encouraged to do so.”

Is £400m enough?
Is £400m enough?

The government announced on 16 May that it will provide a fund of £400m to cover the costs of removal and replacement of cladding to high rise residential blocks which have failed tests.

The problems with co-owned properties and attorneys
The problems with co-owned properties and attorneys

Whilst some people are under the impression that preparing a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is simply a case of completing a form and ticking a few boxes, it is about far more than this.

What's mine is (not) yours!
What's mine is (not) yours!

A big fear for some people facing divorce and the inevitable carving up of the matrimonial assets. They seek assurances that such assets will be “ring-fenced” and retained for them.

How to avoid the PET trap
How to avoid the PET trap

When an individual is thinking about making a gift to another individual, consideration needs to be given to the Potentially Exempt Transfer (PET) trap.

Fictitious divorces
Fictitious divorces

Arising from the recent Family Division announcement, people who think they are legally divorced may in fact still be married.