Grounds for judicial review: Illegality

  • Created by: phoebs.b
  • Created on: 14-04-18 13:01

Council of Civil Service Unions v Minister for the Civil Service (1985) - Lord Diplock provided that the narrow technical grounds for judicial review are illegality, irrationality, and procedural impropriety.

Attorney General v Fulham Corporation (1921) - the attorney general applied for an injunction on behalf of local ratepayers in Fulham to stop Fulham Corporation operating a laundry at public expense. Fulham Corporation claimed to have the power to do this under the Baths and Wash Houses Act 1846 and 1847. The judge held that these statutes empowered Fulham Corporation to provide baths and self-service washing facilities but not a laundry service.

White and Collins v Minister for Health (1939) - the court had to decide whether a compulsory purchase order for slum clearance made by a local authority and confirmed by the Minister for Health under the Housing Act 1936 was valid. The claimant argued that his land was exempt because it was part of a park, garden, or pleasure ground. The Minister of Health argued that the court had no jurisdiction because the case concerned a finding of fact and the compulsory purchase order had been confirmed. It was held that the decision to make a compulsory purchase order was ultra vires because the land in question was part of a park and was, therefore, exempt under the provisions of the Housing Act 1936. 

Anisminic v Foreign Compensation Commission (1969) - the Foreign Compensation Act 1950 empowered the Foreign Compensation Commission (FCC) the hear claims for compensation agreed under international treaties. Its detailed powers, including the matters it was required to take into consideration when making a determination were contained in regulations called Orders in Council. Following the Suez Crisis in 1956, in which British owned property in Egypt was nationalised by the Egyptian Government, the British Government negotiated a treaty with the Egyptian Government under which funds were made available to compensate those who had lost their property. The FCC was empowered to hear and decide these claims. The matters the FCC had to take into consideration when deciding claims were contained in an Order in Council. A claimant had to have owned property in Egypt in 1956 or be a successor in title to such an owner. The claimant also had to be a British National. In this case, the FCC had to decide whether Anisminic was entitled to compensation following the nationalisation of its property in Egypt in 1956 even though it had come to a private agreement with the Egyptian Government to 'sell' its property to an Egyptian organisation called TEDO. This agreement was without prejudice to further claims. The FCC determined that Anisminic was not entitled to compensation because Anisminic had sold its property to TEDO which was not a British national as required by the Order in Council. Anisminic asked a High Court judge for a declaration that the determination of the FCC was null and void because there had been a jurisdictional error. Anisminic argued that the FCC had misinterpreted the…


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