Batantu v Islington London Borough Council [2000] (unreported) (QBD)

Assessment – duty to provide accommodation – s47(1)(a) National Heath Service and Community Care Act 1990

Once a local authority had carried out an assessment pursuant to s47(1)(a) National Heath Service and Community Care Act 1990 and had identified a need for accommodation, it was under a duty to provide such accommodation.

There were four stages when lack of resources could fall to be considered:

(i) when a local authority was considering whether to carry out a assessment under s.47(1)(a) of the 1990 Act;

(ii) during the assessment itself, when there was a limited scope to act according to availability of resources;

(iii) when a local authority was deciding whether to comply with its duty under s.21 of the 1948 Act; and

(iv) if, when complying with or when about to comply with its duty, there was a range of accommodation available to meet the need.

Once the local authority concluded that the need, which triggered the duty, existed it had to provide accommodation to meet the need.

Section 47(3) of the 1990 Act only applied during the assessment of needs. The duty to house the applicant lay with the council, not the housing department. The council’s duty was a continuing one and the claimant’s refusal to accept private sector accommodation did not absolve the council of that duty.

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