Barrister

Kerry Bretherton QC

Year of call 1992

Housing

Kerry is a specialist in property and housing litigation. Her clients include developers, property management companies, private clients, charities and local and central government.

Real property work includes land registration, boundaries, easements, rights of light and party walls.  A recent example of her work is MacLeod and others v Gold Harp Properties Ltd and others [2014] EWCA Civ 1084; [2015] 1 W.L.R. 1249 (in which Kerry succeeded in the Court of Appeal in the leading case on land registration)

Commercial property transactions such as high value 54 Act cases including renewal, possession and dilapidations. A recent example is lease renewal of an office block which had substantial financial significance to her client. Kerry was involved in work regarding the Pubs Code. Kerry chaired the RICS Dilapidations Roadshow in Leicester in 2016.  Recent examples of her work include London & Quadrant Housing Trust Ltd v Prestige Properties [2013] EWCA Civ 130 which concerned possession of an alleged ransom strip in which Kerry obtained personal costs orders against the director and shadow director and succeeded in the Court of Appeal. 

Residential property cases including mixed use developments, service charge disputes, leasehold enfranchisement, rights of first refusal, right to manage, possession and disrepair.  Recent work has included high value disputes on issues ranging from VAT chargeable on service charges in high end developments to cases involving right to manage and rights of first refusal.  Kerry has been involved in some of the most significant cases in this area including McDonald v McDonald [2016] UKSC 28; [2016] 3 W.L.R. 45 (which concerns the right to rely upon an Article 8 defence in a claim brought by a private landlord in which permission has been sought to appeal to the ECHR), Ruza Berrisford v Mexfield Housing Co-operative [2011] UKSC 52; [2011] 3 W.L.R. 1091 which involved tenancies for life; London Borough of Hackney v Findlay [2011] EWCA Civ 8 in which Kerry succeeded in the Court of Appeal regarding the procedural test which was applicable when a tenant failed to attend a possession hearing and Sharples v Places for People; Godfrey v A2 Dominion Housing [2011] EWCA Civ 813; [2011] H.L.R. 45 concerning possession and debt relief orders and Alexander-David v Mayor and Burgesses of the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham [2009] EWCA Civ 259 the lead case on granting tenancies to minors in which Kerry succeeded in the Court of Appeal.

Social housing including homelessness, allocations, right to buy, possession, succession, and disrepair.  Kerry has long since been regarded as one of the leading practitioners in the area of social housing and has been consistently rated in the directories as such.  She has been involved in a number of the lead cases in the area of homelessness: Haile v Waltham Forest LBC [(UKSC) [2015] A.C. 1471 (an intentional homelessness case in which Kerry succeeded on behalf of the appellant and the Supreme Court clarified the relevant test for intentional homelessness), Hemans v Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead [2011] EWCA Civ 374 in which Kerry succeeded in the Court of Appeal, Bull v Oxford City Council [2011] EWCA Civ 609 and Waltham Forest LBC v Davis Maloba & Law Society (Interested Party) [2008] 1 WLR 2079.  Examples of her right to buy cases include Ryan v London Borough of Islington [2009] EWCA Civ 578 and Kerry has dealt with many cases involving succession.


Public law/central and local government

Kerry was A panel Government Counsel prior to her appointment to silk and is recognised in the directories for her work in public law.  The primary focus of her public law work is on property related public law issues such as planning/compulsory purchase and commercial public law issues such as public procurement and issues affecting local government although she is also known for her work in the Court of Protection.  Her work ranges from cases in the Supreme Court, most recently MB v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions [2016] UKSC 53; [2017] 1 All E.R. 338 (referred to the ECJ) and Court of Appeal examples include R. (on the application of Kent CC) v Secretary of State for Health [2015] EWCA Civ 81; [2015] 1 W.L.R. 1221 (ordinary residence under the National Assistance Act) Secretary of State for the Home Department v CT (Vietnam) [2016] EWCA Civ 488 to tribunal work such as AN Checker Heating & Services Engineers v Revenue and Customs Commissioners First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber), [2013] UKFTT 506 (TC).

Her Court of Protection work includes the leading cases on personal welfare such as ACCG v MN (the jurisdictional boundary between the Administrative Court and Court of Protection in which judgment from the Supreme Court pending) A local authority v M [2015] EWCOP 4 (factitious illness imposed on others) and G v E (Costs) [2010] EWHC 3385 (Fam) (affirmed by the CA  at [2011] EWCA Civ 939 the lead case on costs in the Court of Protection and to those on property and affairs Re GM [2013] EWHC 2966 (COP); [2013] W.T.L.R. 835 (financial abuse of a vulnerable adult) and Re Treadwell (deceased) [2013] EWHC 2409 (COP); [2013] W.T.L.R. 1445 concerning statutory wills.


Notable cases

Kerry has appeared in many of the leading cases in property and housing law.  Some recent examples include McDonald v McDonald [2016] UKSC 28; [2016] 3 W.L.R. 45 (possession), Haile v Waltham Forest LBC [(UKSC) 2015] A.C. 1471 (intentional homelessness); MacLeod and others v Gold Harp Properties Ltd and others [2014] EWCA Civ 1084; [2015] 1 W.L.R. 1249 (land registration)  and London & Quadrant Housing Trust v Prestige Properties Ltd [2013] EWCA Civ 130 (forfeiture, injunctions and costs);  Mexfield Housing Co-operative v Berrisford[2011] UKSC 52; [2012] 1 A.C. 955 (life tenancies); Places for People Homes Ltd v Sharples [2012] Ch. 382 (Debt Relief Orders, bankrupcy and possession); Hackney LBC v Findlay [2011] P.T.S.R. 1356 (setting aside possession orders).

Examples of her public law work includes MB v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions [2016] UKSC 53; [2017] 1 All E.R. 338 (referred to the ECJ by the Supreme Court) and work in the Court of Appeal examples include R. (on the application of Kent CC) v Secretary of State for Health [2015] EWCA Civ 81; [2015] 1 W.L.R. 1221 (ordinary residence under the National Assistance Act) Secretary of State for the Home Department v CT (Vietnam) [2016] EWCA Civ 488 to tribunal work such as AN Checker Heating & Services Engineers v Revenue and Customs Commissioners First-tier Tribunal (Tax Chamber), [2013] UKFTT 506 (TC) (single supply of VAT);

Her Court of Protection work includes the leading cases on personal welfare such as ACCG v MN (the jurisdictional boundary between the Administrative Court and Court of Protection in which judgment from the Supreme Court pending) A local authority v M [2015] EWCOP 4 (factitious illness imposed on others) and G v E (Costs) [2010] EWHC 3385 (Fam) (affirmed by the CA  at [2011] EWCA Civ 939 the lead case on costs in the Court of Protection and to those on property and affairs Re GM [2013] EWHC 2966 (COP); [2013] W.T.L.R. 835 (financial abuse of a vulnerable adult) and Re Treadwell (deceased) [2013] EWHC 2409 (COP); [2013] W.T.L.R. 1445 concerning statutory wills.

Testimonials

"A new silk with a track record of heavyweight cases"

Legal 500 (2016)

"Ferociously tenacious, she has incredible judgement and is willing to take on difficult cases and battle on where others would give up."

Chambers & Partners (2016)