Alice Richardson

Call 2013

"Very creative and excellent at spotting a new point, Alice is very thorough in her work and has strong advocacy skills"
Legal 500

Alice Richardson

EXPERTISE

Alice specialises in public law, housing, landlord & tenant and property law. She has a particular interest in cases involving discrimination under the Equality Act 2010, human rights and capacity issues.

Alice has appeared in courts and tribunals at all levels including the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.

She undertook pupillage, and began her practice, at a leading specialist set of Chambers in London before relocating to the North-East in summer 2017.

Alice was appointed to the Attorney General's regional panel of counsel in 2018 and she was appointed to the Equality and Human Rights Commission panel of counsel in 2019.

Housing/Landlord & Tenant

Alice’s practice covers all aspects of landlord and tenant and social housing litigation, including possession, homelessness, allocations, anti-social behaviour, tenancy deposits, unlawful eviction, disrepair and housing conditions, tenancy fraud, succession and assignment. 

Alice has significant experience in matters concerning anti-social behaviour and community safety. She regularly appears in contested possession, injunction and committal trials in the County Court. She is interested in the use of civil remedies in tackling community safety issues such as domestic violence and gang-related problems. She has appeared in high-profile ASB cases including obtaining an injunction against a prolific ‘anti 5G’ protester who had threatened councillors and staff and damaged street-lights in Gateshead. She has also obtained Closure Orders in the Magistrates’ Court and advised on Public Space Protection Orders and Community Protection Notice. She is currently involved in a complex Judicial Review concerning a Noise Abatement Notice.

Public Law & Judicial Review

Alice has a growing public law practice covering a wide-range of areas. In addition to housing and homelessness matters her practice covers social welfare, community care, environmental law and prison law.

Alice has appeared in both the First Tier Tribunal and the Upper Tribunal in appeals concerning social security benefits. She has been instructed in a wide range of matters including disputes concerning housing benefit and the ‘bedroom tax’, challenges involving the ‘right to reside’ and complex claims concerning disability benefits.

Alice has been instructed in a wide range of claims brought by prisoners predominantly in relation to alleged breaches of the Human Rights Act 1998 or the Equality Act 2010. 

Property

Alice’s practice also covers traditional chancery work and she has particular experience of TOLATA claims, dilapidations, disrepair, possession and related disputes including breach of covenant, forfeiture and relief. She accepts instructions in leasehold disputes including service charges, property management and enfranchisement.

Regulatory

Alice is regularly instructed in regulatory matters in her specialist areas, including:

  • Prosecutions under the Environmental Protection Act 1990.
  • Rent Repayment Orders in the First Tier Tribunal.
  • Closure Orders in the Magistrates’ Court.
  • HMO licensing prosecutions. 
  • Abatement of nuisance.
  • Advising on licensing schemes under the Housing Act 2004.

Court of Protection

Alice has a developing Court of Protection practice and is regularly instructed in matters concerning both Property and Affairs and Health and Welfare Matters. She has been instructed by local authorities, professional deputies and on behalf of the Official Solicitor.

She is also regularly instructed in County Court matters in proceedings involving parties lacking capacity particularly those which arise in the context of housing and homelessness.

APPOINTMENTS

  • Attorney General's Regional B Panel of Counsel (2021 - 2026)
  • Attorney General's Regional C Panel of Counsel (2018 - 2021)
  • Equality & Human Rights Commission Panel of Counsel for England & Wales (2019 - 2023)

PUBLICATIONS

The ‘reasonable recipient’ test and possession notices (Pease v Carter), Lexis PSL, 20th February 2020 (available here)

Case summariser, Lime Legal, “Housing Law Week” (available here)

Regular contributor, Legal Action Group, Housing Law Blog (available here)

Conviction for managing an unlicensed HMO quashed on appeal: an application must be decided before instigating a prosecution, LondonPropertyLicensing.co.uk, 19th July 2018 (available here)

The right to rent and local authorities’ duties (R v Milton Keynes Council), Lexis PSL,19th January 2018 (available here)

Selective Licensing & Company Directors, Local Government Lawyer, 19th January 2018.

Securing gang injunctions, Local Government Lawyer, 7th September 2017 (available here).

Revisiting decisions on eligibility for homelessness assistance, Local Government Lawyer, 9th June 2017.

Proportionality and Private Landlords, Solicitor’s Journal 2016, 160(36) Supp (Bar Focus), 24-27.

Ali v United Kingdom: Homelessness Appeals and the Right to a Fair Trial, Journal of Housing Law 2016, Vol.19(2), 38-42.

MEMBERSHIPS

  • Constitutional & Administrative Law Bar Association
  • Housing Law Practitioners' Association
  • Social Housing Law Association
  • Human Rights Lawyers' Association
  • Court of Protection Practitioners Association

EDUCATION & AWARDS

  • Sir Joseph Priestly Scholarship 2013- The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple
  • Internship Award 2013- The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple
  • Duke of Edinburgh Scholarship 2012 - The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple
  • Exhibition Award (BPTC) 2012- The Honourable Society of the Inner Temple
  • Best New Student Pro-Bono Activity 2012 - LawWorks/Attorney-General’s Awards
  • 2011-2013 Bar Professional Training Course (Part-time) “Very Competent”, College of Law, London Bloomsbury
  • 2007-2010 LLB (Hons) 2.1, The University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Alice is available to deliver CPD training to solicitors, advisors and clients across her specialist areas.

She is also qualified to accept instructions directly from the members of the public through the Direct Access scheme.

Alice undertook a four-month internship with Reprieve working pro-bono on death penalty cases at a Texas law office prior to commencing pupillage. She continues to undertake pro-bono work including through the Bar Pro Bono Unit/ Advocate.

Clerking team

Paul McNab

Civil & Criminal Silks' Clerk (Leeds)

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0113 3235 955

Lead Civil Clerk

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0191 245 9589

Lead Employment Clerk

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0191 300 9359

Clerk (Middlesbrough)

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01642 247 569

Lead Family Clerk

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0191 245 9551

Family & Immigration Clerk

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0191 245 9531
  • "Alice is a confident and highly-organised barrister. She is open and transparent at all times when dealing with her client."

    Legal 500 2022

  • "A rising star of the Bar"

    Social Housing - Rising Star, Legal 500 2022

  • "An exceptionally well-rounded performer; real depth of knowledge in residential property law"

    Rising Star - Property & Construction, Legal 500 2021

  • "Very creative and excellent at spotting a new point, Alice is very thorough in her work and has strong advocacy skills"

    Rising Star -Administrative & Public Law, Legal 500 2021

  • "Extremely knowledgeable about Administrative and equality law", "relaxed and calm and with a very good paper presentation of a case" and also "knowledgeable about funding possibilities which can appear as an adjunct to many other areas"

    Rising Star - Administrative & Public Law, Legal 500 2021

  • "The go-to barrister in Newcastle for this kind of work"

    Rising Star - Social Housing, Legal 500 2021

The Court of Appeal considered the correct approach to requests made to lessee-owned property management companies under s.116 Companies Act 2006. It was not improper to obtain contact information for other members to propose resolutions to replace the existing directors and managing agent. Whilst rights as a leaseholder and as a shareholder are distinct, it was impossible to draw a sharp dividing line between the covenants under the lease and the affairs of the company.

Successfully represented the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions defending a challenge to the lawfulness of the 28 day ‘hospitalisation rule’ in the Social Security (Disability Living Allowance) Regulations 1991. The Upper Tribunal held that a lack of capacity was not an ‘other status’ for the purposes of Art.14 and the rule did not unlawfully discriminate against disabled adults in hospital. 

Judicial review of a decision to serve a noise abatement notice on a person with an involuntary vocalisation disorder primarily on the basis of disability discrimination under the Equality Act. The High Court agreed that the matter could proceed by way of judicial review notwithstanding the existence of a right to a statutory appeal as it was ‘uncertain’ whether the Magistrates’ Court had jurisdiction to consider the EA points.

Successfully represented a private landlord in a second appeal, to the Court of Appeal, on the applicability of the “reasonable recipient” test and “substantially to the same effect” provisions to possession notices served under s.8 Housing Act 1988.

It was an entirely proper and legitimate purpose for a member of a lessee-owned property management company to seek to inspect the register of members in order to pursue the objective of effecting a change of managing agents.

Successfully represented a tenant, pro-bono, in an appeal against the decision of the First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to grant a Rent Repayment Order of £1. The judge held that there had been a breach of natural justice, the appeal was allowed on all grounds and the matter remitted to the FTT for a re-hearing.

Successfully represented a lessee-owned property management company in an application to the High Court seeking a direction that it need not comply with a shareholder’s request to inspect the register of members. The request was not made for a “proper purpose” because Mr Barton sought to pursue his rights as a leaseholder, not as a member of the company.

Represented the Secretary of State in this appeal concerning the test for “genuine and effective work" in relation to an EU citizen’s right to reside in the UK. The judge praised Alice’s “measured and thoughtful questioning and submissions

Successful appeal against conviction for failure to license an HMO under s.72(1) Housing Act 2004 on the basis of abuse of process. The authority had taken the decision to prosecute despite failing to deal with the landlord’s application for a license pursuant to the Act.

Successfully defeated the local authority’s appeal to the Court of Appeal. The authority were not entitled to ‘revise’ their positive decision on Mr Sambotin’s homelessness application notwithstanding the fact that a local connection referral was outstanding.

Successfully represented the local authority in the largest ever gang-injunction application against 18 members of rival gangs engaging in serious anti-social behaviour. The case received national media attention.

Successfully represented the claimant in a judicial review of a local authority’s decision to revoke a decision made under Part 7, Housing Act 1996.

Successfully opposed an appeal to the Court of Appeal on the lawfulness of a suspended sentence for breach of a gang injunction.

Successfully acted for the RLA, an intervener, in the Supreme Court on the applicability of an Article 8 defence in possession proceedings brought by a private landlord.

An appeal to the Court of Appeal on local authorities’ duties when a homeless applicant complains about the suitability of accommodation.

Successful judicial review challenging a local authority’s additional and selective licensing schemes under the Housing Act 2004.

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