Wahid v London Borough of Tower Hamlets: CA 7 Mar 2002

Gilliatt The appellant suffered from schizophrenia. He was refused permission to apply for judicial review and for orders requiring the local authority not just to provide suitable accommodation but better accommodation as a person in need of care and attention under s 21(1) of the National Assistance Act 1948. The court decided that in a case where the evidence showed that a person’s housing needs could adequately be meet by the provision of ordinary housing, there was no extra duty under the National Assistance Act. The family had a housing need, not just the claimant as a result of his mental illness. He was not in need of ‘care and assistance’ under the National Assistance Act. The power to provide accommodation is dependent upon three conditions being satisfied: first, the person must be in need of care and attention; secondly, the need must arise by reason of age, illness, disability or ‘other circumstances’ and, thirdly, the care and attention which is needed must not be available otherwise than by the provision of accommodation under section 21.


Pill LJ, Mummery LJ, Hale LJ


[2002] EWCA Civ 287, [2003] HLR 2, [2002] 5 CCLR 247, [2002] BLGR 545, [2002] LGR 545




National Assistance Act 1948 21(1)


England and Wales


Appeal fromRegina (Wahid) v The London Borough of Tower Hamlets Admn 23-Aug-2001
The applicant sought assistance under the National Assistance Act, in the form of housing. He suffered mental illness and was vulnerable. It was argued that the Act imposed a duty on the authority which was regardless of its budgetary limitations. . .

Cited by:

CitedWestminster City Council v National Asylum Support Service HL 17-Oct-2002
The applicant sought assistance from the local authority. He suffered from spinal myeloma, was destitute and an asylum seeker.
Held: Although the Act had withdrawn the obligation to provide assistance for many asylum seekers, those who were . .
CitedLambeth London Borough Council v Ireneschild CA 16-Mar-2007
The tenant held a secure tenancy of a first floor flat of the Council. She was severely disabled and argued that the danger of injury meant that she should be allowed to occupy the empty ground floor flat. She complained at the way the authority had . .
CitedM, Regina (on the Application of) v Slough Borough Council HL 30-Jul-2008
The House was asked ‘whether a local social services authority is obliged, under section 21(1)(a) of the 1948 Act, to arrange (and pay for) residential accommodation for a person subject to immigration control who is HIV positive but whose only . .
CitedAhmad, Regina (on the Application of) v London Borough of Newham HL 4-Mar-2009
The claimant wished to be rehoused by the defendant authority. He complained that their allocations policy was unlawful. Once an applicant was deemed in priority need, he entered a pool if such persons and houses were allocated (save in extreme . .
CitedA, Regina (on the Application of) v London Borough of Croydon SC 26-Nov-2009
The applicants sought asylum, and, saying that they were children under eighteen, sought also the assistance of the local authority. Social workers judged them to be over eighteen and assistance was declined.
Held: The claimants’ appeals . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Housing, Local Government

Updated: 05 June 2022; Ref: scu.168081