On appeal from: [2013] EWCA Civ 494

The Supreme Court unanimously allowed the appeal challenging the Court of Appeal’s decision to set aside the damages awarded to the appellant under the Housing Act 1988, s 28, following his unlawful eviction by the respondents. The appellant was a secured tenant of a one bedroom flat owned by the respondents and upon returning to his property after a long holiday to Ghana, he found that all of his possessions had been removed and a new tenant was now occupying his flat.

The appellant sought damages for the eviction and Lambeth County Court awarded him £90,500 in damages after considering the valuation exercise of s 28 of the 1988 Act, and £9,000 at common law in respect of the trespass of his goods. The respondents challenged this decision at the Court of Appeal where the s 28 damages were set aside and replaced with £7,400 in damages at common law for the unlawful eviction.

Upon restoring HHJ Blunsdon’s order for damages the Court stated that the issue in the case was whether the valuation of both the upstairs and downstairs flat for the purposes of the valuation exercise under s 28 should be conducted on the assumption that they were subject to secure tenants or to assured tenants. It stated given the fact that the appellant had enjoyed the right to occupy the downstairs flat as a secure tenant, the valuations should be conducted on the assumption of secure tenancy based on s 28(1)(a) which stipulates that the “same right” continues.


For judgment, please download: [2014] UKSC 65
For Court’s press summary, please download: Court’s Press Summary
For a non-PDF version of the judgment, please visit: BAILII