Examination of Witnesses

Part of Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:17 pm on 9th June 2020.

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Adrian Berry:

I believe in the rule of law. I think it is a good thing if we have judicial scrutiny of executive decisions, including deportation, removal and detention decisions, in order to ensure that they are lawful and consistent with the values that we have embedded in our Human Rights Act provisions and in our civil liberties provisions and statutes.

To answer your question directly, a lot of judicial reviews are settled on issuing, because the Home Office realises that it has made a mistake and it compromises on them. The second stage at which they are settled is when permission to apply for judicial review is granted and the Home Office realises that it has made a mistake and it compromises; it settles and pays the costs, on a polluter-pays principle. Very few judicial reviews go the distance to a substantive hearing, so you have to be very, very careful in measuring the data between the number of claims lodged and the number of claims that are determined at a final hearing.

What we do know is that judges routinely grant injunctions against removals, on the basis that they see a point in holding the ring in order to determine the true and lawful position in the situation. Whatever someone has done, all their interests—including the public policy interest in their expulsion and, on occasion, the public policy interest in their retention—are to be weighed up before a lawful decision is made. Judicial review is one check on it, in the absence of a proper full range of appeals, that allows that to take place.