TIMES.KY

Cayman Islands, Caribbeanand International News
Saturday, Feb 04, 2023

Why does the government want to reform judicial review?

Why does the government want to reform judicial review?

Tory ministers have long been unhappy with wide-ranging court powers to challenge the legality of their actions

The justice secretary, Dominic Raab, is planning to make it harder to succeed in judicial reviews against the government, a leaked document suggests. But what is judicial review and why is the government determined to reform it?

What is judicial review?


A judicial review is a court proceeding in which a judge examines the lawfulness of an action or a decision of a public body such as the government, a local council, police force or NHS trust. It involves a claimant challenging the way a decision has been reached by an official or minister and determining whether that person made a mistake in law in reaching the decision.

Why is the government unhappy about judicial review?


Ministers have not taken kindly to losing cases or even to being challenged. There have been attacks on “lefty lawyers” and allegations that judges have overreached. Two of the most notorious judicial reviews to go against the government were related to Brexit, on whether it could trigger article 50 and the prorogation of parliament respectively. More recently, it has been angry about the challenge to its policy to send some migrants to Rwanda.

What has it sought to do about it?


In its last election manifesto the Conservative party pledged to end “abuse” of judicial review. The government handpicked a panel of six experts to conduct a review of it but was accused of distorting their findings. While the panel asserted the importance of judicial review and advised against “far-reaching legislation”, when launching a public consultation after its publication the Ministry of Justice said the panel had found courts were increasingly “moving beyond the remit of judicial review”.

The language used by the MoJ prompted fears about what was coming but ultimately the changes contained in the Judicial Review and Courts Act, which came into effect on Friday 15 July, were generally considered to be modest in impact. That is not to say they were without controversy, with the end to “Cart” judicial reviews – appeals against decisions of tribunals mainly relating to immigration/asylum and social security cases – criticised by the likes of Liberty and the Public Law Project.

Why is it looking at further changes?


There was a widely held perception that many in government did not feel that the judicial review reforms went far enough and that is why Robert Buckland QC was sacked as lord chancellor and justice secretary and replaced by Dominic Raab. The plans contained in the leaked document have a feel of unfinished business. Raab has already proposed scrapping the Human Rights Act and replacing it with a British bill of rights, which would also limit government accountability by denying some individuals hitherto universal protections.

What do judges say?


By convention, judges are prohibited from commenting on government policy or legislation. However, the all-party parliamentary group on democracy and the constitution (APPGDC) accused ministers of acting in a “constitutionally unhelpful and inappropriate manner” by questioning the legitimacy of judges and had created an impression that recent supreme court decisions favourable to the government may have been a response to political pressure. The head of the judiciary in England and Wales, Lord Burnett, has urged Raab to protect the judiciary against attacks by his colleagues. Geraint Davies MP, APPGDC chair, said Raab was complicit, saying the role of lord chancellor had become “a political stepping stone from which to take pot shots at the judiciary”.

Newsletter

Related Articles

TIMES.KY
Close
0:00
0:00
Charlie Munger, calls for a ban on cryptocurrencies in the US, following China's lead
EU found a way to use frozen Russian funds
First generation unopened iPhone set to fetch more than $50,000 at auction.
WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT - US Memphis Police murdering innocent Tyre Nichols
Almost 30% of professionals say they've tried ChatGPT at work
Interpol seeks woman who ran elaborate exam cheating scam in Singapore
What is ChatGPT?
Bill Gates is ‘very optimistic’ about the future: ‘Better to be born 20 years from now...than any time in the past’
Tesla reported record profits and record revenues for 2022
Prince Andrew and Virginia Giuffre Photo Is Fake: Ghislaine Maxwell
Opinion | Israel’s Supreme Court Claims a Veto on Democracy
Moonwalker Buzz Aldrin Gets Married On His 93rd Birthday
Who’s Threatening Israeli Democracy?
Federal Reserve Probes Goldman’s Consumer Business
China's first population drop in six decades
Microsoft is finalising plans to become the latest technology giant to reduce its workforce during a global economic slowdown
China's foreign ministry branch in Hong Kong urges British gov't to stop the biased and double standards Hong Kong report
Tesla slashes prices globally by as much as 20 percent
1.4 Million Copies Of Prince Harry's Memoir 'Spare' Sold On 1st Day In UK
After Failing To Pay Office Rent, Twitter May Sell User Names
Lisa Marie Presley, singer and daughter of Elvis, dies aged 54
FIFA president questioned by prosecutors
Britain's Sunak breaks silence and admits using private healthcare
Hype and backlash as Harry's memoir goes on sale. Unnamed royal source says prince 'kidnapped by cult of psychotherapy and Meghan'
Saudi Arabia set to overtake India as fastest-growing major economy this year 
Google and Facebook’s dominance in digital ads challenged by rapid ascent of Amazon and TikTok
FTX fraud investigators are digging deeper into Sam Bankman-Fried's inner circle – and reportedly have ex-engineer Nishad Singh in their sights
TikTok CEO Plans to Meet European Union Regulators
UK chaos: Hong Kong emigrants duped by false prospectus
France has banned the online sale of paracetamol until February, citing ongoing supply issues
Japan reportedly to give families 1 million yen per child to move out of Tokyo
Will Canada ever become a real democracy?
Hong Kong property brokerages slash payrolls in choppy market
U.S. Moves to Seize Robinhood Shares, Silvergate Accounts Tied to FTX
Effect of EU sanctions on Moscow is ‘less than zero’ – Belgian MEP
Coinbase to Pay $100 Million in Settlement With New York Regulator
FTX assets worth $3.5bn held by Bahamas securities regulator
A Republican congressman-elect is under investigation in New York after he admitted he lied about his education and work experience.
Brazilian football legend Pele, arguably the greatest player ever, has died at the age of 82.
Hong Kong to scrap almost all its Covid rules
EU calls screening of travellers from China unjustified
US imposes Covid testing for visitors from China
Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy Addresses Joint Session of Congress - FULL SPEECH
If a country is denied the right to independence by another, it is not in a union. It is in a dictatorship.
Where is Rishi? Chancellor Jeremy Hunt's excuses about the UK's economic challenges just don't make sense
Former FTX CEO Bankman-Fried finally arrested in Bahamas after U.S. files charges
Corruption works: House Financial Services Chair Waters doesn't plan to subpoena her donor, Sam Bankman-Fried, to testify at hearing on FTX collapse
Ronaldo's new contract...
Prince William's godmother resigns honorary royal role after exposing her/their racism
British PM Rishi Sunak pledges further action on strikes to 'protect lives'
×