Civil society in a post-Brexit democracy

Brexit is a landmark event in the history of the UK’s constitutional development and it presents many questions for civil society organisations concerned with public law and human rights. Brexit also presents an opportunity to reflect more widely on the major challenges facing government in the next 10 years, and the corresponding challenges and opportunities

PLP submussion to the UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty ahead of his UK Country visit in November 2018

PLP have written to the UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights ahead of his UK country visit in November 2018. We have highlighted a number of areas of concern for his consideration including: Access to justice and legal aid; benefit reform and benefit sanctioning; online justice and digitisation of the courts system;

PLP intervenes in a judicial review of the Home Office’s removal windows policy

In July, PLP intervened in the Upper Tribunal case of R(FB & NR) v SSHD, a judicial review of the Home Office’s removal window policy.  The Applicants are represented by Duncan Lewis Solicitors. PLP has a longstanding interest in whether Home Office removal policies respect an individual’s constitutional right of access to the court. In

PLP’s client wins fight for education

Leeds City Council has accepted that it has a duty to fund a full five day post-16 education programme for PLP’s client, Francesca Adam-Smith.  Francesca’s mother, Rachel Adam-Smith, said “A reduction in Francesca’s education, at a critical stage of her life, would have limited her ability to reach her potential, isolated her from society and

Legal Aid Restored for Unaccompanied Migrant Children

The Public Law Project welcomes the announcement last Thursday that the Government will restore in-scope legal aid for unaccompanied and separated migrant children’s immigration cases, a step which will greatly improve access to justice for this vulnerable group. The decision has come about as a result of a long-running judicial review challenge brought by the Children’s Society, with which

High Court quashes tender for Legal Aid contracts

The High Court has today quashed the Lord Chancellor’s decision to tender for contracts to deliver legal aid funded Housing Possession Court Duty (HPCD) schemes.  The tender was based on new, larger scheme areas and price competitive tendering. The Court’s judgment is available here. Following a consultation exercise in which the overwhelming majority of respondents objected

PLP Briefing – EU Union (Withdrawal) Bill

Ahead of the Second Reading of the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill in the House of Lords, PLP has prepared a short briefing paper  for Peers highlighting three key issues with the Bill. PLP takes no position on the UK’s decision to leave the European Union. Our work around the EU (Withdrawal) Bill is intended to ensure that

Open letter to Minister from NGOs expresses concern over LASPO review

PLP has signed an open letter to the Minister for Legal Aid expressing concern at the methodology for the long-awaited Post-Implementation Review of the LASPO reforms to legal aid.   Neither PLP nor any of the other civil society signatories to the letter has been invited to join any of the four consultative groups established by

Sir Paul Jenkins

We are very sorry to hear of the untimely death of Sir Paul Jenkins.  Paul had joined PLP as a patron recently, bringing with him an unparalleled experience of civil service and a valued new perspective.  He was widely known for his wit, judgment and good humour. These and other attributes were evidenced in his contribution to our 2017 London conference, in a debut appearance

How will legal aid now be made available?

How will legal aid now be made available in discrimination and education cases? It is the Lord Chancellor’s duty to secure it The Public Law Project has long had concerns that, far from ensuring the efficient provision of legal advice, the mandatory telephone gateway is a barrier to access to justice.  This was the conclusion

Sir Henry Brooke

The staff, trustees and remaining patrons of the Public Law Project are very sad to hear of Sir Henry Brooke’s passing. He was a unique figure in the legal profession. Jo Hickman, PLP’s Director said: ‘Henry was a principled, inspirational, kind man. We will miss him terribly. Our thoughts are with Biddy and his family.’ Sir Henry posted,

DWP to review thousands of benefits decisions to check they are fair

In December 2017, RF, represented by the Public Law Project, persuaded the High Court to quash the PIP 2017 Regulations on the grounds that they were manifestly unreasonable, discriminated unfairly and because they were ‘game changers’ that should have been consulted on.  The court was also persuaded that the Regulations infringed the UN Convention of