Harrogate Borough Council -v- Simpson; CA 1985

The claimant (defending proceedings for possession by the local authority) had lived with the deceased secure tenant in a lesbian relationship for some years and was so living at the date of her death. She sought to defend her occupation saying she qualified as a spouse of the deceased.
Held: The defence failed: ‘I agree that the expression ‘living together as husband and wife’ . . is not apt to include a homosexual relationship. The essential characteristic of living together as husband and wife, in my judgment, is that there should be a man and a woman . . ‘ (Ewbank J) The natural English meaning of the words ‘wife or husband’ was gender-specific, and thus, purely as a matter of language, excluded same-sex relationships.

Court: CA
Date: 01-Jan-1985
Judges: Watkins LJ, Ewbank J
Statutes: Housing Act 1980 50
References: (1985) 17 HLR 205,
Cited By:

Leave a Comment

Filed under Housing

Leave a Reply