I was admitted to the Roll of Solicitors on 17 February 2020 after completing a 2-year training contract with Minton Morrill funded by a Justice First Fellowship from the Legal Education Foundation. I qualified in the Housing and Social Welfare department specialising in Housing Law, Community Care and Judicial Review.
Prior to working at Minton Morrill I was a specialist caseworker with the Housing legal advice team of a large regional charity and a volunteer Housing Adviser at Darlington Citizens’ Advice Bureau.
I have experience of representing clients facing possession action by private and social housing landlords, as well as advising on disrepair, illegal evictions, and other housing matters. I advise households who are homeless or threatened with homelessness and provide assistance with statutory reviews of Local Authority homelessness decisions. I regularly attend Leeds County Court as part of the Housing Possession Court Duty Scheme, providing “on-the-spot” advice and legal representation for tenants and homeowners.
I have a keen interest in discrimination issues, particularly where they relate to mental health. Mental ill health is often a root cause of homelessness and of issues which lead to loss of a home such as rent arrears, inability to navigate the benefits system, and mental health related anti-social behaviour. Failures on the parts of landlords and local authorities to give proper consideration to the effects of these disabilities or to provide support to the sufferer can lead to possession proceedings being brought inappropriately, or to incorrect decisions about homelessness duties, all of which are open to legal challenge.
I manage Community Care files for clients. I help identify care and support needs and arrange assessments by social workers, psychiatrists, occupational therapists and other specialists for clients with a range of complex and long term mental and physical health issues. This work ensures the most vulnerable tenants have their long term health needs protected with the right support in place to enable independent living. I also advise clients on their rights to challenge the outcomes of assessments of their needs, and failures to provide agreed care and support “in the community”.
Graduate Diploma in Law (with Distinction) – the College of Law, 2012
Legal Practice Course (with Distinction) – the University of Law, 2014
Justice First Fellow, 2017 cohort