Commentary

A5.307 Judicial review—procedure

Administration and compliance

A5.307 Judicial review—procedure

A5.307 Judicial review—procedure

Applications for judicial review are commenced in the Administrative Court of the High Court, except in those cases outlined in A5.301A when proceedings should be commenced in the Upper Tribunal.

Before a claimant applies for judicial review, unless time constraints require otherwise, it is always prudent for the claimant to warn the proposed defendant, normally HMRC, of the intention to commence proceedings. A claimant who fails to do this may fail to recover any costs of the application if HMRC subsequently allows the claim before the determination of the matter by the court. In R v IRC, ex p Opman International UK1, the taxpayer company successfully sought permission to apply for judicial review on the grounds that the Revenue had refused to give proper consideration to a claim that royalties paid to the taxpayer were not subject to UK tax. On being served with the papers the Revenue conceded the claim. However, no order for costs was made because of the claimant's failure to give any warning of its intention to commence proceedings.

The current pre-action protocol for judicial review proceedings states that a claimant should send a letter before a claim. It contains a suggested standard form letter. It states that defendants should seek to respond to this letter within 14 days. The protocol is taken into account in awarding costs2.

Note that during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, pre-action letters must be sent by email rather than by post. For details, see A8.305.

The court's permission to proceed is

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