JUDICIAL REVIEW: a Form of Court Proceeding about the lawfulness of Public Bodies

laws for atoms

laws for atoms (Photo credit: Will Lion)

The Public Law Project is a small organisation that has just published this introduction to Judicial Reviews. It summarises:

  • the judge reviews the lawfulness of a decision or action, or a failure to act, by a public body exercising a public function. It is only available where there is no other effective means of challenge.

Judicial review is concerned with whether the law has
been correctly applied, and the right procedures have been followed. In order to succeed, the claimant will need to show that either:

  • A public body is under a legal duty to act or make a decision in a certain way and is unlawfully refusing or failing to do so; or
  • A decision or action has been taken by a public body that is beyond the powers it is given by law.

The ‘grounds’ for Judicial Reviews or JRs can be: 

  1. Illegality
  2. Fairness
  3. Irrationality and Proportionality.

The Court can then

  1. Quash an order
  2. Prohibit an order
  3. Make an Injunction
  4. Make a Mandatory Order
  5. Make a Declaration
  6. Award Damages
  7. The get out clause is ‘discretion’:Even if the court finds that a public body has acted wrongly it does not have to grant a remedy. It might decide not to do so if it thinks the claimant’s own conduct has been
    wrong or unreasonable, for instance where the claimant has delayed unreasonably, has not acted in good faith, or where a remedy would impede a public body’s ability
    to deliver fair administration.
    Remember that the court will not normally make a decision for a public body, even if you win your judicial review. Very often the public body will have to take a decision again, but following a fairer procedure. It is possible that you may still not get what you want.

The Procedure for Applying covers these stages:

  1. Pre-action stage: this means writing a letter before claim
  2. The permission stage: this means asking for permission to bring a JR against the public body
  3. The final hearing: if permission is granted, the case will to to a final hearing.

About Sabine Kurjo McNeill

I'm a mathematician and system analyst formerly at CERN in Geneva and became an event organiser, software designer, independent web publisher and online promoter of Open Justice. My most significant scientific contribution is www.smartknowledge.space
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One Response to JUDICIAL REVIEW: a Form of Court Proceeding about the lawfulness of Public Bodies

  1. JM says:

    damn it, i just threatened ebay with that….but not a public body so doh…..immunity for them as well then.

    every employee of ITV.com as well…..actaully under the ‘terrorism’ legislation the govt cd just seize all their assets and knock a few pence of income tax no doubt, that’ll stop the frackers breaking into people’s homes, rooting through all thier private stuff, stealing/ throwing away and other wise trashing the place…and calling it 60 minute makeover

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