Q&As

What are the key features of judicial review in Scotland and how does it compare to England and Wales?

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Published on LexisPSL on 03/03/2016

The following Local Government Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • What are the key features of judicial review in Scotland and how does it compare to England and Wales?
  • Scope
  • Remedy of last resort
  • Public/private bodies
  • Standing
  • Time limit
  • Permission
  • Process
  • Grounds of review
  • Remedies

Judicial review in Scotland evolved separately from England and Wales which accounts for its unique features and terminology. However, in recent years there have been extensive reforms to the rules and practice of judicial review in Scotland bringing the jurisdictions closer together. The Court Reform (Scotland) Act 2014 ushered in a number of significant changes, such as a new test for standing and a three-month limit on commencing proceedings, with the aim of providing increased procedural clarity, more effective case management and swifter determination of claims.

This Q&A outlines the distinctive features of judicial review in Scotland, as compared to England and Wales. Our Judicial review topic contains a range of materials on the principles and process of judicial review in both jurisdictions where you will find extensive guidance on the topics referred to below.

Scope

Remedy of last resort

Judicial review in Scotland is a remedy of last resort. The Court of Session Rule 58.3(2) provides that a petition may not be lodged in respect of an application if that application could be made by appeal or review under or by virtue of any enactment. The position is similar in England and Wales where generally, the court will not entertain a judicial review claim if there is a suitable alternate remedy available to the claimant.

Public/private bodies

A distinctive feature of judicial review in Scotland is that it is

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