Oakley v South Cambridgeshire District Council: The maturing of the common law duty to give reasons

In Oakley v South Cambridgeshire District Council [2017] EWCA Civ 71, a Court of Appeal with strong public law credentials — consisting of Elias, Patten and Sales LJJ — addressed the scope of the common law duty to give reasons. In this area, the orthodox position has long been understood to consist in the principle — laid down by Lord Mustill in R v Secretary of State for the Home Department ex parte Doody [1994] AC 531 — that there is no ‘general duty’ to give reasons, coupled with the guidance given by Sedley J in R v Higher Education … Continue reading Oakley v South Cambridgeshire District Council: The maturing of the common law duty to give reasons

The duty to give reasons and the new statutory “makes no difference” principle

I wrote in December about what might loosely be termed the “makes no difference” principle introduced by section 84 of the Criminal Justice and Courts Act 2015, which  inserts new provisions into section 31 of the Senior Courts Act 1981. The effect is that in judicial review proceedings the High Court must refuse relief if it appears “to be highly likely that the outcome for the applicant would not have been substantially different if the conduct complained of had not occurred”, unless the granting of relief is appropriate “for reasons of exceptional public interest”. (Equivalent provision is also made about the … Continue reading The duty to give reasons and the new statutory “makes no difference” principle