Homelessness

    Ella approached her local pro bono clinic as she was trying to get her deposit back after her landlord had terminated her assured shorthold tenancy. Ella was advised on how to recover this and the failure of the landlord to protect the deposit. Ella was helped to prepare legal proceedings and to submit a claim. The landlord took no action and the matter proceeded to trial. The volunteer agreed to further assist Ella at the hearing. Ella was successful at the hearing and the judge made an award in her favour for the return of the deposit balance £1,042, a penalty of £4,626 for failure to register the deposit and £615 in court costs.

    Maria and her children were evicted from their home after the benefit cap meant her housing benefit no longer covered the rent. The council offered smaller accommodation 50 miles away from their family and friends.

    The clinic's pro bono lawyers argued that the council were not taking the children's best interests into consideration. As a result, the family were able to stay in their community and in their home. The children were able to stay in school with their friends and didn't have to leave any of their belongings behind.

    Sandra faced serious domestic violence and had been beaten so badly she suffered brain damage. Her partner repeatedly ignored injunctions against him. Repeat disturbances to her neighbours meant that Sandra's landlord threatened to evict her. The police could take action against her partner but couldn't help with her housing problem. Sandra had no funds to pay for legal help and was initially too scared to go to solicitors; but went to a pro bono clinic advertised as free.

    A volunteer lawyer drafted an application on her behalf to prevent forfeiture of her lease. It was accepted. Sandra was able stay in her home and looks towards a brighter future. 

     
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