The Government first announced plans for a shared ownership right to buy in October 2019. At the time the sector raised concerns about the impact the plans would have on housing associations ability to borrow. An election and a pandemic later the Government announced, during the CIH Housing Festival last week, the return of the right to shared ownership as part of its Affordable Homes Programme (AHP).
Our team can provide expert legal advice and support to housing providers throughout investigations, inquests and public inquiries.
When an incident occurs in a housing setting, it can give rise to lengthy and wide-ranging enquiries from a number of sources. In addition to the Coroner and the family, the Health and Safety Executive, the fire service, the local authority and the police may also be conducting investigations. Providers will also likely have to notify other relevant stakeholders (such as their insurers and the Regulator of Social Housing).
Anthony Collins Solicitors has an in-depth understanding of the needs of housing providers. We are familiar with the processes of such organisations and how they work, from the excellent and diverse services provided to tenants on a day-to-day basis, through to the responsibilities of the board of directors and how the internal systems work.
This understanding, coupled with our team’s varied and extensive experience, allows us to provide clear, comprehensive and practical advice to providers during the investigations and inquests that may follow a serious incident.
Legal support with investigations, inquests and public inquiries for the housing sector
Our team can:
- assist providers as they complete internal investigations and review internal investigation reports.
- represent providers during investigations by the police and any relevant regulators (including the Health and Safety Executive). Understanding how distressing such investigations can be, our team will ensure providers and their staff understand the process and will assist and support providers as they handle enquiries and requests from all relevant stakeholders.
- support and advise providers through the inquest process. Our assistance will include co-ordinating with the Coroner on behalf of providers, drafting witness statements, meeting with staff to provide an overview of the process and advising on issues surrounding reports for the prevention of future deaths. Where appropriate, our team can also provide advocacy during the inquest hearing.
Investigations and inquest support following a serious incident in a care setting
Our team has significant experience in assisting care providers with investigations and inquests following a serious incident. We are also therefore able to provide legal support to housing providers should a serious incident occur at one of their care settings or services.
Representation during a public inquiry
Where a significant event causes public concern, a public inquiry can be established. The purpose of the inquiry will normally be to establish what happened and to identify the lessons to be learned. Members of our team have advised and represented core participants in some of the most complex and high-profile public inquiries. With this experience and our sector knowledge, we are able to provide expert legal support to registered providers and/or sector bodies who are involved in or affected by a public inquiry.
Most insurers recognise our expertise and will work with us, at your request, ahead of their normal panel firm, who won't necessarily be a sector specialist.
Taking legal advice as soon as possible, in relation to a serious incident, can make a significant difference to the outcome of further enquiries. To find out more about how we can support you following a serious incident, please contact Tim Coolican.
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