Labour’s plans for energy and medicines – public law analysis

We have published two papers which consider the impact of the Labour Party’s recently announced policies on two heavily regulated sectors, namely the energy and pharmaceutical industries. The policies proposed in relation to both sectors, which are similar to those now also proposed in other industries (such as the water industry and in relation to … Read more

Incidental powers allow public body to publish its findings in the public interest

In Vote Leave Ltd v The Electoral Commission [2019] EWCA Civ 1938 the Court of Appeal found that it was within the Electoral Commission’s incidental powers to publish a report setting out its investigation and findings in relation to payments made by Vote Leave Ltd (“Vote Leave”) during the 2016 EU referendum (the “Report”). In doing so, the … Read more

Watt’s the issue here? High Court dismisses challenge to Government smart meter programme

In R (on the application of Utilita Energy Ltd v Secretary of State for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy [2019] EWHC 2612 (Admin), the High Court dismissed Utilita Energy Ltd (Utilita’s) application for judicial review of three decisions relating to the Government’s smart metering programme. Key Points Public authorities are entitled to delay public consultation … Read more

London-wide ban on Extinction Rebellion protests quashed by High Court

Last week the High Court handed down its judgment on the high profile judicial review brought against the Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis by a number of activists and politicians who support Extinction Rebellion (XR), the environmental pressure movement. The decision challenged was that of Superintendent Duncan McMillan taken on 14 October 2019 to … Read more

Supreme Court unanimously holds that extended prorogation of Parliament is unlawful

In R (Miller) v The Prime Minister; Cherry and ors v Advocate General for Scotland [2019] UKSC 41, the Supreme Court found that the Prime Minister’s advice to Her Majesty to prorogue Parliament for an extended period was unlawful and void, and quashed the consequent Order in Council effecting the prorogation. Key Points It is the function … Read more

High Court considers what constitutes sufficient reasons

In R (Gare) v Babergh District Council [2019] EWHC 2041, the High Court quashed a planning permission granted by Babergh District Council (the “Council“) on the basis that the Council failed to provide sufficient reasons for this decision. In doing so, the Court gave guidance on what constitutes sufficient reasons by a public body for a decision. … Read more

Presumption against blocking judicial review reaffirmed

In an important judgment on constitutional principle, the Supreme Court has reaffirmed the fundamental presumption against ousting the supervisory judicial review jurisdiction of the High Court (R (on the application of Privacy International) v Investigatory Powers Tribunal [2019] UKSC 22). Key Points  There is a fundamental presumption against ousting the supervisory role of the High Court … Read more