Judicial Review Reforms
New measures were brought into effect on 1st July 2013 which may reduce the time that public bodies, including educational institutions are obliged to spend time in dealing with judicial review applications.
“The measures aim to tackle the burden that this growth has placed on stretched public services whilst protecting access to justice and the rule of law”.
Numbers of judicial review applications have been steadily climbing over recent years, exceeding 11,000 in total in 2011, nearly double the figure just four years earlier in 2007 (6,692). In 2011 only 144 applications were successful, compared with 187 successful applications in 2007.
Changes which are likely to curb the growth in applications, or enable those that are made to be disposed of more expeditiously, include the following:-
• There is a new fee of £215.00 for requesting an oral hearing after a judicial review application has been turned down on paper.
• If an application is ruled as being totally without merit when considered on paper the applicant will not be able to request an oral hearing.
• The time limit for applying for judicial review of a pronouncement decision has been reduced from 3 months to 4 weeks.
There is also a proposal to increase the fee for a judicial review application from £60.00 to £235.00.
The Justice Secretary, Chris Grayling, has said: ‘Judicial Review should be used by people who have carefully considered whether they have proper grounds to challenge a decision. We are changing the system so it cannot be used anymore as a cheap delaying tactic.’ (www.gov.uk/government/news/action-on-time-wasting-judicial-reviews).
About the author
Patricia is a Practising Consultant in the Dispute Resolution team.
Published: Friday 30th August 2013