Avoiding a judicial review
Produced in partnership with Morayo Fagborun Bennett of Hardwicke Chambers
Avoiding a judicial review

The following Public Law practice note Produced in partnership with Morayo Fagborun Bennett of Hardwicke Chambers provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Avoiding a judicial review
  • Decision-making and avoiding a judicial review
  • Take care with decision-making
  • Adhere to statutory, non-statutory and/or contractual time frames
  • Is the decision watertight, thorough and balanced?
  • Take care with the decision letter or notice
  • Pre-action considerations to avoid a judicial review challenge
  • Consider how to avoid the main grounds of judicial review arising
  • Pre-action protocol for judicial review
  • Pre-permission considerations in judicial review
  • More...

Although it may not be possible to prevent a claimant from issuing a claim for judicial review, the more robust the decision-making process employed by a public body, the easier it will be to persuade a court to dismiss the claim at an early stage.

CPR 54.1(2)(a) defines a claim for judicial review as:

'a claim to review the lawfulness of—

(i) an enactment; or

(ii) a decision, action or failure to act in relation to the exercise of a public function.'

This Practice Note deals with steps that a public body can take to protect itself against a successful judicial review challenge.

It includes non-exhaustive checklists of considerations and good practice to help reduce successful judicial review permission applications.

Decision-making and avoiding a judicial review

Take care with decision-making

Consider for instance:

  1. whether the public body has sufficient information to make a decision

  2. whether the public body has taken into account all material considerations

  3. whether the public body has taken into account any irrelevant considerations

  4. whether a review of the application or decision is required

  5. whether further inquiries or investigations need to be made to enable a decision to be taken

  6. whether the reasons provided by the public body orally and in writing are consistent

Adhere to statutory, non-statutory and/or contractual time frames

Consider for instance:

  1. is it possible to make a decision within the requisite time frame?

  2. have any required extensions been agreed

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