Claim number: CO/256/2023
In the High Court of Justice
King’s Bench Division
Deputy Chamber President Judge Meleri Tudur sitting as a Deputy High Court Judge
The King on the application of
Notification of the Judge’s decision on the application for permission to apply for judicial review (CPR 54.11, 54.12)
Following consideration of the documents lodged by the Claimant and the Acknowledgement of Service and Summary Grounds of Defence filed by the Defendant
ORDER by Deputy Chamber President Judge Meleri Tudur sitting as a Deputy High Court Judge
- Pursuant to CPR rule 39.2(4) there shall not be disclosed in any report of the proceedings the name or address of the Claimant or any details leading to his identification. If referred to, the Claimant shall only be referred to as ‘A’.
- Pursuant to CPR rule 5.4C a person who is not a party to the proceedings may obtain a copy of a statement of case, judgment or order from the court records only if the statement of case, judgment or order has been anonymised such that: (a) the Claimant is referred to in those documents only as ‘A’; and (b) any references to his name have been deleted from those documents.
- The application for permission to apply for judicial review is refused.
- The application for interim relief is refused.
- No order for costs.
- The application for permission has been made out of time. The Claimant first instructed solicitors to act on his behalf on the 22 August 2023, shortly after the contested decision letter was sent to him on the 19 August 2023.
- Procedural rigour is a necessity in judicial review proceedings and an application must be submitted promptly, at the earliest stage possible and in any event within 3 months of the decision challenged.
- In this case, the Defendant states that the decision was made on the 4 August 2022 and a decision letter issued on the 19 August 2022. The application should therefore have been made by the 18 November 2022 at the latest.
- The Claimant’s legal representative in a witness statement dated 16 February 2023 confirms that they were instructed on the 22 August 2022 and a request for further documents was sent to the Local Authority on the 5 October 2022. It is claimed that the Defendant delayed responding to the request and that a pre-action protocol letter was sent on the 31 October 2022. The statement acknowledges that there has been a delay in making the application beyond the 3 month deadline but offers no explanation for the delay from the 22 August 2022 to the 31 October 2022 which was the date when the first pre-action protocol letter was sent to the Defendant.
- The statement confirms that an application for Legal Aid was not made until 14 December 2022 and the application for judicial review was not issued until the 23 January 2023. The delay beyond the three-month deadline was therefore extensive and insufficient explanation or reasons have been provided to justify extending time for making the application.
- I conclude that the application was not made promptly, that sufficient explanation has not been provided for the delay, there was no application to extend time and it is not appropriate to extend time for making the application.
- The Claimant remains an asylum seeker and his application for asylum has not yet been concluded and it is appropriate that in these proceedings he should be afforded anonymity pursuant to CPR 39.2(4).
- Although the Defendant has sought the costs of preparing the Acknowledgement of Service, a costs schedule, although mentioned in the summary grounds of defence, has not been provided and I conclude that a costs order should not be made.