Supreme Court rejects right to die appeals

25 June 2014 by

Tony NicklinsonR (on the application of Nicklinson and another) (Appellants) v Ministry of Justice (Respondent); R (on the application of AM) (AP) (Respondent) v The Director of Public Prosecutions (Appellant) [2014] UKSC 38 – read judgment

On appeal from [2013] EWCA Civ 961

The Supreme Court has declined to uphold a right to die a dignified death.  However, a glimmer is is to be found in this judgment in that two out of the seven justices who concluded that it was for the United Kingdom to decide whether the current law on assisted suicide was incompatible with the right to privacy and dignity under Article 8, would have granted such a declaration in these proceedings., particularly where the means of death was one that could have been autonomously operated by the disabled appellant, leaving no doubt as to the voluntary and rational nature of his decision.

But the majority concluded that this was a matter for Parliament, not for the Courts.

The following summary is from the Supreme Court’s Press Summary

Bacground 

These appeals arise from tragic facts and raise difficult and significant issues, namely whether the present state of the law of England and Wales relating to assisting suicide infringes the European Convention on Human Rights (“the Convention”), and whether the code published by the Director of Public Prosecutions (“the DPP”) relating to prosecutions of those who are alleged to have assisted suicide is lawful.

Until 1961 suicide was a crime in England and Wales and encouraging or assisting a suicide was therefore also a crime. By section 1 of the Suicide Act 1961, suicide ceased to be a crime. However, section 2 of that Act (“Section 2”) provided that encouraging or assisting a suicide remained a crime, carrying a maximum sentence of 14 years in prison, but that no prosecutions could be brought without the permission of the DPP. Section 2 was amended by Parliament in 2009, but its basic effect remains unchanged. Following a decision of the House of Lords in 2009, the DPP published “Policy for Prosecutors in respect of Cases of Encouraging or Assisting Suicide” (“the 2010 guidelines”) setting out his policy in relation to prosecutions under Section 2.

In the first appeal, Mr Nicklinson suffered a catastrophic stroke some nine years ago, since when he was completely paralysed, save that he could move his head and his eyes. For many years, he had wanted to end his life, but could not do so without assistance, other than by self-starvation, a protracted, painful and distressing exercise. He wanted someone to kill him by injecting him with a lethal drug, but if necessary he was prepared to kill himself by means of a machine invented by a Dr Nitschke which, after being loaded with a lethal drug, could be digitally activated by Mr Nicklinson, using a pass phrase, via an eye blink computer.

Mr Nicklinson applied to the High Court for (i) a declaration that it would be lawful for a doctor to kill him or to assist him in terminating his life, or, if that was refused, (ii) a declaration that the current state of the law in that connection was incompatible with his right to a private life under article 8 of the Convention (“Article 8”). The High Court refused Mr Nicklinson both forms of relief; he then declined all food and died of pneumonia on 22 August 2012. Mr Nicklinson’s wife, Jane, was then added as a party to the proceedings and pursued an appeal. Mr Lamb was added as a claimant in the Court of Appeal. Since a car crash in 1991, Mr Lamb has been unable to move anything except his right hand. His condition is irreversible, and he wishes to end his life. He applied for the same relief sought by Mr Nicklinson. The Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal brought by Mr Nicklinson and Mr Lamb.

In the second appeal an individual known as Martin suffered a brainstem stroke in August 2008; he is almost completely unable to move and his condition is incurable. Martin wishes to end his life by travelling to Switzerland to make use of the Dignitas service, which, lawfully under Swiss law, enables people who wish to die to do so. Martin began proceedings seeking an order that the DPP should clarify, and modify, his the 2010 Policy to enable responsible people such as carers to know that they could assist Martin in committing suicide through Dignitas, without the risk of being prosecuted. Martin’s claim failed in the High Court, but his appeal was partially successful, in that the Court of Appeal held that the 2010 Policy was not sufficiently clear in relation to healthcare professionals.

Mrs Nicklinson and Mr Lamb have appealed to the Supreme Court in the first appeal and the DPP has appealed and Martin has cross-appealed in the second appeal.

The Court’s decision 

The Supreme Court, by a majority of seven to two dismissed the appeal brought by Mr Nicklinson and Mr Lamb. It unanimously allowed the appeal brought by the DPP, and dismisses the cross-appeal brought by Martin. Each of the nine Justices gives a judgment.

On the first appeal, the Supreme Court held, unanimously, that the question whether the current law on assisted suicide was incompatible with Article 8 lay within the United Kingdom’s margin of appreciation, and was therefore a question for the United Kingdom to decide. Five Justices (Lord Neuberger, Lady Hale, Lord Mance, Lord Kerr and Lord Wilson) held that the court has the constitutional authority to make a declaration that the general prohibition on assisted suicide in Section 2 was incompatible with Article 8. Of those five, Lord Neuberger, Lord Mance and Lord Wilson declined to grant a declaration of incompatibility in these proceedings, but Lady Hale and Lord Kerr would have done so. Four Justices (Lord Clarke, Lord Sumption, Lord Reed and Lord Hughes) concluded that the question whether the current law on assisting suicide is compatible with Article 8 involved a consideration of issues which Parliament was inherently better qualified than the courts to assess, and that under present circumstances the courts should respect Parliament’s assessment.

On the second appeal, the Supreme Court unanimously allowed the DPP’s appeal. The exercise of judgment by the DPP, the variety of relevant factors, and the need to vary the weight to be attached to them according to the circumstances of each individual case are all proper and constitutionally necessary features of the system of prosecution in the public interest. In light of the Supreme Court’s conclusion on the second appeal, Martin’s cross-appeal did not arise.

Reasoning behind the decision 

The first appeal: is the present law on assisting suicide incompatible with Article 8?

The Supreme Court unanimously held that, according to the case law of the European Court of Human Rights, the question whether to impose a general ban on assisted suicide lay within the margin of appreciation of the United Kingdom [66, 154, 218, 267, 339]. Whether the current law is incompatible with Article 8 is, therefore, a domestic question for the United Kingdom courts to decide under the Human Rights Act 1998.

It was also the unanimous view of the court that Section 2 engaged Article 8, as it prevents people who are physically unable to commit suicide without assistance from determining how and when they should die. Accordingly, it could only be a justified interference if it satisfied the requirements of Article 8(2), ie that it is “necessary in a democratic society” for one or more of the purposes specified in that article, which in the present context would be “for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others” [79, 159, 216, 335].

Lord Neuberger, Lady Hale, Lord Mance, Lord Kerr and Lord Wilson held that, within the constitutional settlement of the United Kingdom, the court had the constitutional authority to make a declaration of incompatibility in relation to the blanket ban on assisted suicide [76, 191, 299, 326].

Lord Neuberger, Lord Mance and Lord Wilson conclude that, while the question of assisted suicide was a difficult, sensitive and controversial issue on which great significance will be attached to the judgment of the democratically informed legislature, this did not mean that the legislative judgment was necessarily determinative [76, 191]. However, while the sensitive and controversial nature of this issue did not justify the court ruling out the possibility that it could make a declaration of incompatibility, it would be inappropriate for a court to decide whether Section 2 is incompatible with Article 8 before giving Parliament the opportunity to consider the position in the light of this judgment [116].

The main justification advanced for an absolute prohibition on assisted suicide was the perceived risk to the lives of vulnerable individuals who might feel themselves a burden to their family, friends or society and might, if assisted suicide were permitted, be persuaded or convince themselves that they should undertake it, when they would not otherwise do so [81, 171]. A system whereby a judge or other independent assessor was satisfied in advance that someone has a voluntary, clear, settled and informed wish to die and for his or her suicide then to be organised in an open and professional way would arguably provide greater and more satisfactory protection for the vulnerable, than a system which involvesd a lawyer from the DPP’s office inquiring, after the event, whether the person who had killed himself or herself had such a wish [108, 186]. The interference with Mr Nicklinson’s and Mr Lamb’s Article 8 rights was grave and the arguments in favour of the current law are by no means overwhelming [111].

However, even had it been appropriate to issue a declaration of incompatibility at this time, Lord Neuberger, Lord Mance and Lord Wilson would not make a declaration in these proceedings. In the courts below the main focus was on Mr Nicklinson’s submissions that necessity should be recognised as a defence to murder, whereas before the Supreme Court the case advanced was that a machine like Dr Nitschke’s would offer a feasible means of suicide for those who have an autonomous wish but require assistance to do so. They were not confident that the court has the necessary evidence on, or that the courts below or the Secretary of State had a proper opportunity to address this issue [119-121, 153].

Lady Hale and Lord Kerr would have issued a declaration of incompatibility. It is clear that Article 8 confers a right on an individual to decide by what means and at what point his or her life will end, provided that he or she is capable of freely reaching a decision. They held that, in making no exception for those whose expressed wish to die reflected an autonomous desire rather than undue pressure, the current ban on assisting suicide was incompatible with Article 8 [300, 326]. Lady Hale drew attention to the similarity between a procedure for identifying those who have made such an autonomous decision but require some help to carry it out and other life and death decisions currently made in the Family Division of the High Court and the Court of Protection. Lord Kerr emphasised that when courts make a declaration of incompatibility, they do precisely what Parliament, through the Human Rights Act 1998, has empowered them to do, and remit the issue to Parliament for a political decision informed by the court’s view of the law [343]. The remission of the issue to Parliament does not involve the court making a moral choice which is properly within the province of the democratically elected legislature [344]. Lord Kerr would also hold that there was no rational connection between the aim of Section 2(1) and the interference with the Article 8 right [350].

Lord Sumption, Lord Hughes, Lord Reed and Lord Clarke accepted that the courts had jurisdiction under the Human Rights Act to determine whether the current universal ban on assisting suicide was compatible with Article 8, but considered that the question turned on issues which Parliament was in principle better qualified to decide, and that under present circumstances the courts should respect Parliament’s assessment. The question required a judgment about the relative importance of the right to commit suicide and the right of the vulnerable, especially the old and sick, to be protected from direct or indirect pressure to do so. It was unlikely that the risk of such pressure can ever be wholly eliminated. Therefore the real question was how much risk to the vulnerable was acceptable in order to facilitate suicide by others who are free of such pressure or more resistant to it. This involves important elements of social policy and a moral value-judgment, which are inherently more suitable for decision by Parliament as the representative organ of the constitution. This was for three reasons: (1) the issue involves a choice between two fundamental but mutually inconsistent moral values, the sanctity of life and the principle of autonomy, which are sensitive to a society’s most fundamental collective moral and social values and upon which there is no consensus in our society, (2) Parliament has made the relevant choice on a number of occasions in recent years, and (3) the Parliamentary process is a better way of resolving issues involving controversial and complex questions of fact arising out of moral and social dilemmas in a manner which allows all interests and opinions to be expressed and considered [228-232].

The second appeal: is the 2010 Policy lawful?

The Supreme Court unanimously allowed the DPP’s appeal.

Section 2(4) of the Suicide Act 1961 precludes any prosecution of a person who has allegedly contravened Section 2 without the DPP’s consent [39]. It is one thing for the court to decide that the DPP must publish a policy, and quite another for the court to dictate what should be in that policy [141]. The exercise of judgment by the DPP, the variety of relevant factors, and the need to vary the weight to be attached to them according to the circumstances of each individual case, are all proper and constitutionally necessary features of the system of prosecution in the public interest [249, 271].

During these proceedings, counsel for the DPP indicated that under the 2010 Policy a stranger who is not profiteering from his or her action, but assisting to provide services which, if provided by a close relative, would not attract a prosecution, was most unlikely to be prosecuted. The Director will be able to consider further whether that indication should stand and whether, if so, the 2010 Policy needs amendment, without it being appropriate to order her to undertake any such review [146, 193, 251 and 323].

In light of the court’s conclusion on the second appeal, Martin’s cross-appeal does not arise.

Further observations

Lord Sumption summarised [255(2), (3) and (4)] the principal respects in which the law already allows for the alleviation of suffering in the terminally ill, in view of the fact that they appear to be widely misunderstood. These paragraphs are specifically endorsed by Lord Neuberger [137], Lady Hale [324] and Lord Mance [194].

References in square brackets are to paragraphs in the judgment 

Sign up to free human rights updates by email, Facebook, Twitter or RSS

Related posts and other reading:

 

1 comment;


  1. jonholbrook says:

    On spiked I have argued that law reformers who combine a disregard for practical reality with a disrespect for moral autonomy are in danger of overseeing the introduction of something far worse: the state regulation of death.

    http://www.spiked-online.com/newsite/article/the-state-should-not-be-the-god-of-death/15316#.U7UvhPldV8E

Comments are closed.

Welcome to the UKHRB


This blog is run by 1 Crown Office Row barristers' chambers. Subscribe for free updates here. The blog's editorial team is:
Commissioning Editor: Jonathan Metzer
Editorial Team: Rosalind English
Angus McCullough QC David Hart QC
Martin Downs
Jim Duffy

Free email updates


Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog for free and receive weekly notifications of new posts by email.

Subscribe

Categories


Tags


#50cases #catgate #fighthatewithhumanrights #lawblogs 7/7 7/7 bombing 7/7 inquest 7/7 inquests 9/11 100 years of women in law 1688 bill of rights 2010 General Election 2012 in review 2012 year in review 2017 @Iamspartacus a1p1 a1p1 breach A1P1 damages Aarhus Aarhus Convention A B and C abbas hall Abid Naseer ablyazov abortion Absent Witness Abu Hamza abu qatada abuse of dominant position abuse of private information abuse of process academic freedom access to courts access to information Access to justice accountability acoustic shock acquired disorder AC v Berkshire Addison Lee Adetoro v United Kingdom adjudication administrative law admissability criteria adoption adoption orders advance decision advance directive advertisements advertising affirmative action Afghanistan age assessment agency age of criminal responsibility aggravated damages agreement Agriculture Ahava Ahmad Faraz Khan AI air noise air pollution air quality air travel Al-Saadoon and Mufdhi Alan Turing ALBA alcohol dependence algorithm algorithms Alien Tort Statute alignment problem Al Jedda allergy allocation of resources Al Qaeda Al Quaeda Al Rawi Al Skeini alternative medicine alternative therapy altruism American Declaration of Independence Amnesty International Amnesty International 2010 Report amphibians amusement parks ancillary relief Andy Coulson animal cruelty animal culls animal rights Animals animal welfare anonymising anonymity anonymous website anorexia nervosa an rights Ansari ANS v ML [2012] UKSC 30 anti-blasphemy laws anti-discriminatiom anti-semitism anti-terrorism review anti-terrorist legislation antibody antiretrovirals anxious scrutiny AONB A P Herbert appeal Appeals archeology Arctic charr Arhuus Convention Armed forces army arrest Article 1 Protocol 1 Article 2 article 3 article 3 UNCRC article 5 Article 5 ECHR article 5(3) Article 6 article 6 criminal Article 6(3) Article 8 Article 8 claim against council Article 8 protection of privacy Article 9 article 10 Article 11 article 13 Article 14 Article 50 article 263 TFEU artificial hydration and nutrition Artificial Intelligence artificial nutrition and hydration Artile 8 asbestosis Assange Assange extradition assisted reproduction assisted suicide assisting suicide associated newspapers asylum asylum amnesty asylum claim asylum law asylum seeker asylum seeker death driver asylum seekers ATE premiums atheism Atul Gawande audio Australia australian constitution autism autonomy axel springer axel springer ag ayslum Azelle Rodney babar ahmad baby Baby P badger cull badgers Badger Trust bad judges bad tackle Baha Mousa Public Inquiry Bahta & Ors bail BAILII bailout Balen Report ban bankers bonuses Bank Mellat baptism barclay brothers barristers bats' rights battlefield BBC beaches bedroom tax beijing belief benefit cap benefits bereavement damages best interests big business bike training service bilateral trade treaty bill of right Bill of Rights Bill of rights commission Bingham Rule of Law Centre Binyam Mohamed bioethics biology biomedicine biometric data biotechnology bipolar disorder birds directive birmingham birth certificate births deaths and marriages BJ (INCAPACITATED ADULT) sub nom SALFORD CITY COUNCIL v BJ Black & Morgan v. Wilkinson blawg blawg review blight blogging blogosphere blogs blood Bloody Sunday Bloody Sunday findings BNP boaters boats Body scanners Boris Johnson bovine TB bradley manning BRCA BRCA gene BRCA mutation breach of Article 6 breach of Article 6(1) breach of confidence breast cancer brevet brexit Brian Haw bribery Bribery Act 2010 Brighton Conference Brighton Declaration British Airways British Airways v Unite British Bill of Rights British Chiropractic Association British citizenship British constitution British embassy british lawyers British soldiers Broadmoor bronze soldier brownlie browsing BSkyB BUCKLAND v. THE UNITED KINGDOM - 40060/08 - HEJUD Buddhism budget Bull v Hall burkha Burnham Market Book Festival Cadder Cafcass Canada canal cancellation cancer CAP capacity carbon capture cardio-pulmonary resuscitation Care and Support Bill care home care home; elderly people; dementia; capacity; deprivation of liberty care homes care order Care orders care proceedings car insurance carnivores Carson v UK case law Case Note Catholic Care Catholic Church catholic midwives CBI CCTV cerebral palsy CETA CFAs chagos Chagos Islanders charitable objects charity Charity Commission Charles J read judgment Simon Lewis Charlie Hebdo charter Charter of Fundamental Rights chemotherapy chief coroner child child's best interests child abduction child poverty Child Poverty Action Group child protection Children children's homes children's rights Children Act children giving evidence child welfare chimpanzees China Chindamo Chris Grayling Chris Packham Christian christianity church church of scientology CIA circumcision citizens advice bureau citizenship citizens rights civil liberties civil liberties campaigners civil partnerships civil proceedings civl partnerships CJEU CJEU rule of law class of degree client earth climate change climate change sceptic climategate climate research unit clinical need clinical negligence cloning closed material procedure Closed Material Procedures Coalition agreement Coalition Government Code Civile code of conduct cohabitees cold calling Cologne combat immunity comments comment thread commission Commission for Equality & Human Rights Commission on a Bill of Rights common buzzard common law common law rights communications Communications Act 2003 communications data Communications Data Bill 2008 Compassion in World Farming compelementary medicine compensation competition complementary medicine compulsory detention compulsory labour computer hacking computer science concentration camps conditional fee agreements conditions Confederation of British Industry confidentiality confiscation order conscience conscience clause conscientious objection consent conservation Conservative Party Conservatives constitution constitutional court of south africa constitutional disorder construction consultation consultation responses contact order contact point contempt of court contempt of court act content neutrality content providers contingency fee arrangements contract control and restraint Control orders Convention system of protection Conway cookies copying Copyright copyright infringement cornrows coronavirus coroner Coroner's inquest coroners Coroners and Justice Act 2009 corporal punishment cosmetics testing costs Costs and Procedure costs budgets council Council of Europe Counter Terrorism and Security Bill cour de cassation court Court of Justice of the European Union Court of Protection Court of Session Court Orders court procedure Courts Bill Courts Martial Covent Garden Coventry Council CPR gateway CPS CRB challenge credibiility] credibility cricket crime crimes against humanity Criminal criminal conviction Criminal Courts Charge criminal justice Criminal Justice and Courts Bill criminal law Criminal Legal Aid criminal prosecution criminal records criminal responsibility criminal sentencing Cross Examination Crown Prosecution Service crr crucifix cryonic preservation custody custody dispute cuts Cybersecurity D daily mail Daily Mirror Dajid Singh Shergill Dale Farm evictions damage Damages dangerous nonsense database data controller data processing data protection data retention data sharing data snooping date rape david cameron David Chaytor David James David Kelly David Miranda day care closures death death match death penalty Debbie Purdy declaration declaration of incompatibility defamation Defamation Act Defamation Bill defaming the dead defence of illegality defendant's costs order deficit defmation DEFRA delegated legislation democracy Democracy village demolition order demotion Dennis Gill dentist's registration fees Department of Health deportation deportation cases deprivation of liberty deprivation of property derogations Detainee inquiry Detention determinism devolution devolved government Dewani diagnosis Diane Pretty Dica diego garcia Digital Economy Act 2010 Digital Economy Bill Dignitas dignity Dignity in Dying diplomacy diplomatic immunity direct action Directive direct marketing director of public prosecutions disability Disability-related harassment disabled claimants disciplinary hearing disclosure Disclosure of Previous Convictions discretionary leave to remain discretion to quash Discrimination Discrimination law disease dismissal disqualification dissenting judges Divisional Court divorce DNA DNA database DNA home-testing DNA retention DNA testing doctor doctor-patient relationship doctors doctrine of double effect doctrine of state act does it matter? domestic violence domestic workers Dominic Grieve don't ask don't ask don't tell don't tell donor Do Not Resuscitate Notices Doogan and Wood do trees have rights? double conviction DPP guidelines Dr Chhabra dripa driving licence driving penalty Drones Drone strikes drug dealer damages drug offence Dr Zakir Naik Dublin Convention Dublin II Dublin III regulation Dublin II Regulation Dublin Regulation Dudko duties duty of care duty to investigate duty to rescue eastenders eating horses ECHR economic and social rights economic loss economic rights ECtHR Ed Snowden Education Edward Snowden EHRC elderly election election court election results Electoral Commission report Electoral law electric cars electricity Elizabeth Warren ellie butler el masri embryo embryonic stem cells embryos emergency budget emissions trading employers Employment employment appeal tribunal employment disputes employment law employment rights Employment Tribunal fees employment tribunals employment vetting English Defence Leauge English translation enhanced criminal record checks entitlement Environment environmental challenges environmental impact assessment environmental information environmental justice Environmental law environmental law foundation environmental liability directive environmental protection environmental rights environment brexit Envrionmental Information Directive epa endangerment finding eployment Equality Act Equality Act 2010 Equality and Human Rights Commission Equality and Human Rights Commission v Prime Minister & Ors [2011] EWHC 2401 (Admin) - equality of arms equal marriage equal marriage consultation equal treatment erika espionage ethics EU eu and strasbourg EU Charter EU Charter of Fundamental Rights EU Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms eu commission EU competence eu costs eu courts EU criminal Law opt out eu documents eu law Europe european european arrest warrant European Charter European Charter of Fundamental Rights European Charter of Fundamental Rigths European Commission European Communities Act European Convention European Convention on Human Rights European Court European Court of European Court of Human Rights European Court of Human Rights reform European Court of Justice european disability forum European law European Sanctions Blog European Social Charter european union Eurozone EUSFTA eu state liability euthanasia EU transparency EU Turkey summit EU waste directive eviction evidence evidence-based medicine Evidence-based policy evidence of torture evironmental assessment evolution ex-pats exceptional case funding exceptionality excessive taxes exclusion exclusion order executions exhaustion of domestic remedies expenses expenses scandal expert evidence Expert evidence on foreign law Express extinct extinction rebellion extra-jurisdictional reach of ECHR extra-territoriality extradition extradition act extradition procedures extradition review extraordinary rendition Eyjafjallajökull volcano Facebook Facebook contempt facial recognition factitious disorder factory farming fair procedures Fair Trial faith courts fake news false imprisonment false passport Families Need Fathers Family Family Court family courts Family Courts without a Lawyer: A Handbook for Litigants in Person family division Family Justice Review family law family legal aid Family life farage farm farm animals farming fast-track removal fatal accidents act fathers fathers rights feature fertility treatment FGM finance Financial Conduct Authority financial dependency financial harm financial information Financial Services Authority Firat Dink First Amendment first publishers fisheries fishing claims fishing industry fishing quota fishing rights fitness to practise Flood v The Times Flood v Times foetus foia food banks forced marriage force feeding foreign criminals foreign office foreign policy forensic science format shifting Fourteenth Amendment fracking France francovich freedom freedom of assembly Freedom of Association freedom of conscience Freedom of Expression freedom of information Freedom of Information Act 2000 freedom of movement freedom of speech freedom of the press free expression Freemen of the land free movement of goods free speech free will freezing assets French schools FTP fundamental rights Funeral pyre Future of legal blogging G (Children) G4S G20 protest Gabrielle Giffords Gaddafi regime gainsborough game birds Gamu Nhengu gangbo gang injunctions Garry Mann gary dobson Gary McFarlane gay couple gay discrimination Gay marriage gay rights gay soldiers Gaza Gaza conflict gazza GCHQ gdpr GE 2017 gearbox Gender gender reassignment General Dental Council General Duty General Election general election 2010 general election 2019 General Medical Council genes genetic affinity genetic discrimination genetic disorder genetic engineering genetic information Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act genetic modification genetics genetic testing Geneva Convention genome genome sequencing Geoff Hoon George Osborne German Chancellor German court Germany germ line mutation Ghailani GlaxoSmithKlein gmc Goldman Sachs golf course Google government governmental bodies GP privacy grayling consultation Great Repeal Bill green belt grenfell Gresham College grooming gross offence Guantanamo Bay Guardian News and Media Ltd guernsey G v E & Ors G v E & Ors [2011] EWCA Civ 939 gwyneth paltrow gypsies H1N1 habeas corpus habitats Habitats Directive habitats protection hackgate Halsbury's Law Exchange hammerton v uk hancock Haney happy new year harassment Hardeep Singh Haringey Council haringey council tax benefit Harkins and Edwards hate speech Health healthcare health insurance hearing loss Heathrow heist heightened scrutiny Henry VII Henry VIII herd immunity hereditary disorder High Court of Justiciary high speed train route Hindu Hirst No. 2 Hirst v UK HIV HJ Iran HM (Iraq) v The Secretary of state for the home department [2010] EWCA Civ 1322 Holder holkham beach holocaust home homelessness Home Office Home Office v Tariq homeopathy Homo Deus homophobia homo sapiens homosexual hooding horisontality horizontal application horizontal effect horsemeat hospitals Hounslow v Powell House of Commons Housing housing benefit housing benefits Howard Donald Howard League for Penal Reform how judges decide cases hra damages claim HRA incorporation Hrant Dink HRLA HS2 hs2 challenge hts http://ukhumanrightsblog.com/2011/04/11/us-state-department-reports-on-uk-human-rights/ human being human dignity Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority human genome humanism human rights Human Rights Act Human Rights Act 1998 human rights advocacy Human rights and the UK constitution human rights commission human rights conventions human rights damages Human Rights Day human rights decisions Human Rights Information Project human rights in private disputes human rights news human rights record Human Rights Watch human right to education Human Tissue Act human trafficking hung parliament hunting Huntington's Chorea Huntington's Disease HXA hyper injunctions Ian McEwan ICAO Igor Sutyagin illegal immigration illegality illegality defence illegitimacy image rights imaginary litigation immigration Immigration/Extradition Immigration Act 2014 immigration appeals immigration detention immigration judge immigration rules immunity Imports incorporation HRA increase of sanction indefinite leave to remain indian advocates indian supreme court indirect discrimination Indonesia Industrial Action informed consent Infrastructure Planning Committee inherent jurisdiction inherited disease Inhuman and degrading treatment injunction injunction continued inland revenue Inquest inquest law Inquests inquiry insanity inshore fleet insult insurance insurmountable obstacles intellectual property intelligence intelligence services act intensive care intercept evidence interception interests of the child interim remedies international international comity international conflict international court of justice international criminal court international humanitarian law international human rights international human rights law International Labour Organisation international law International Stem Cell Corporation international treaty obligations internet internet libel internet service providers internment internship interrogation intrusion inuit invasive species invention investigation investigative duty in vitro fertilisation Iran iranian bank sanctions Iranian nuclear program iran sanctions Iraq Iraqi asylum seeker Iraq War Ireland Irish Constitution irrationality ISC ISIL islam isolated nucleic acids isolation Israel israeli palestinian conflict italian ships Italy iTunes IVF ivory ban Jack Dorsey jackson reforms Janowiec and Others v Russia ( Japan japanese knotweed Jason Smith jean charles de menezes Jeet Singh Jefferies jehovah's witnesses Jeremy Clarkson Jeremy Corbyn jeremy hunt jihad Jihadi brides jihadists JIH identity jim duffy job jobseekers' allowance Jogee John Hemming John Terry joint enterprise joint tenancy jonathan sumption Jon Guant Joseph v Spiller journalism judaism judges Judges and Juries judging judgment judgment in default Judicial activism judicial brevity judicial deference Judicial immunity judicial no-mans land judicial oversight judicial power judicial review Judicial Review reform Judicial Studies Board judiciary Julian Assange Julian Asssange Juncker jurisdiction jury trial JUSTICE Justice and Security Act Justice and Security Bill Justice and Security Green Paper Justice Cameron Justice Human Rights Awards JUSTICE Human Rights Awards 2010 justiciability justification just satisfaction Kant Katyn Massacre Kay v Lambeth Kay v UK kazakstan Ken Clarke Ken Pease Kerry McCarthy Kettling Khan v Advocate General for Scotland khordokovsky Kings College Kiobel Klimas koran burning laboratory animals laboratory test Labour labour law lack of reasons Lady Hale land landfill gas landowner landowners language lansley NHS reforms LASPO Law Commission Law Pod UK Law Society Law Society of Scotland leave to enter leave to remain Lee Rigby legal advice privilege legal aid legal aid cuts Legal Aid desert Legal Aid Reforms legal blogs Legal Certainty legality legal naughty step Legal Ombudsman legal privilege legal profession legal professional privilege legal representation legitimate expectation let as a dwelling Leveson Inquiry Levi Bellfield lewisham hospital closure Lewis Malcolm Calver liability Libel libel reform Liberal Democrat Conference Liberal Democrats liberal humanism Liberty libraries closure library closures licence conditions licence to shoot licensee life insurance life orders life sentence life support limestone pavements limitation lisbon treaty Lithuania litigant in person litvinenko live exports livestock livestock trade living instrument living will LME local authorities local government locked in syndrome locus standi london borough of merton London Legal Walk London Probation Trust Lord Bingham Lord Bingham of Cornhill Lord Blair Lord Carey Lord Goldsmith lord irvine Lord Judge Lord Judge speech Lord Justice Jackson Lord Kerr Lord Lester Lord Mance Lord Neuberger Lord Phillips Lord Rodger Lord Sales Lord Saville Report Lord Sumption Lord Taylor LSC tender luftur rahman MAGA Magna Carta Magna Carter Mail Online mail on sunday Majority Verdict Malcolm Kennedy male circumcision malice malicious falsehood mandela M and Others v Her Majesty’s Treasury manifestation of belief manifestos Margaret Thatcher Margin of Appreciation margin of discretion Maria Gallastegui Marie Colvin marine conservation marine environmental law marine sanctuaries Mark Kennedy mark twain marriage marriage act 1949 material support maternity pay Matthew Woods Mattu v The University Hospitals of Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust [2011] EWHC 2068 (QB) Maya the Cat Mba v London Borough Of Merton Mcfarlane McKenzie friend me/cfs research Media and Censorship media judge Medical medical confidentiality medical ethics medical evidence medical liability medical negligence medical profession medical qualifications medical records medical treatment medicine mental capacity mental capacity; press; reporting restrictions Mental Capacity Act Mental Capacity Act 2005 Mental Health mental health act mental health advocacy mental health awareness Mental Health Courts mental health hospital Mental illness merits review mesothelioma metgate MGN v UK michael gove Middle Temple Midwives Milly Dowler minimally conscious minimum income minimum sentence Ministerial Code Ministry of Justice Ministry of Justice cuts miscarriage of justice misfeasance in public office missiles misuse of private information mitochondrial disease MMR MMR vaccination modern slavery Mohamed monitoring powers monsanto montgomery mooring moral circle morality morocco mortgage fraud mortuaries motherhood motor neuron disease Motor Neurone disease Moulton Mousa movement for democratic change MP expenses Mr Brewer Mr Gul Mr Justice Eady Mr Justice Sharp MS (Palestinian Territories) (FC) (Appellant) v Secretary of State for the Home Department Munchausen Munchausen by proxy murder murder reform music Musician's Union Muslim mustafa kamal mutation mutations myanmar MY Cannis my kingdom for a horse Myriad NADA v. SWITZERLAND - 10593/08 - HEJUD [2012] ECHR 1691 Nadja Benaissa naked rambler Naomi Campbell narcolepsy National Health Act nationality National Origin National Pro Bono Week national security national sovereignty Natural England natural rights nature nature conservation naturism Nazi neanderthals necessary implication need for legal aid needs assessment negligence neighbour dispute Neuberger neural degeneration neurogenerative disease neuroscience Newcastle university news News of the World news roundup new Supreme Court President NGO standing NHS NHS Risk Register NICE Nick Clegg Nicklinson Niqaab niqab No Angels Noise Regulations 2005 non-justiciability nonhuman animals non voluntary euthanasia Northern Ireland Northern Irish Assembly notification requirements nuclear challenges nuisance nurse nursing nursing home obiter dicta Occupy London offensive jokes Offensive Speech offensive t shirt official solicitor of Rights Commission oil and gas oil spill olympics open justice oppress oppressive treatment OPQ v BJM orchestra orthodox schools Osama Bin Laden Osborn v The Parole Board [2013] UKSC 61 ouster clause overseas aid Oxford University Palestinian Territories palliative care palliative sedation paramount consideration paramountcy principle parental responsibility order parental rights parenthood parents responsibility parking spaces parliament parliamentary expenses parliamentary expenses scandal Parliamentary sovereignty Parliament square parole parole board party funding passengers rights passing off passive smoking passport passport seizure pastor Terry Jones patent patents paternity Pathway Students patiets' rights Patrick Quinn murder Paul Chambers PCOs peace-keeping operations Pensions people for the ethical treatment of animals (Peta) performers' rights permanent injunction persecution persistent vegetative state personal data personal information Personal Injury personality rights Personal life perversity Pet Animals Act 1951 Peter and Hazelmary Bull Peter Gibson pet shops PF and EF v UK Philip Lawrence Phil Woolas phone hacking phone taps photos photovoltaics physical and mental disabilities physical restraint physician assisted death Pinnock Piracy PJS placement order planning planning human rights planning system planning time limits plantagenet plebgate pleural plaques POCA podcast points poison Poland Police police investigations police liability police misconduct police powers police surveillance policing Policy Exchange report political advertising political judges political persecution politicians for hire Politics Politics/Public Order pollution polonium poor reporting Pope Pope's visit Pope Benedict porsche 917 portal possession order possession proceedings post mortem Posts power of attorney PoW letters to ministers pre-nup pre-nuptial Pre-trial detention predator control pregnancy preliminary reference prerogative powers press Press Association press briefing press freedom Priest priests primary legislation Prince Andrew Prince Charles prince of wales princess caroline of monaco principle of subsidiarity prior restraint prison Prisoners prisoners rights prisoners voting prisoner vote prisoner votes prisoner voting prison numbers prison rules Prisons prison vote privacy privacy injunction privacy law through the front door private disputes Private life private nuisance private use procedural unfairness Procedure proceeds of crime Professional Discipline professional indemnity Professional life Property property rights proportionality prosecution Protection of Freedoms Act Protection of Freedoms Bill protective costs Protest protest camp protest rights Protocol 15 psychiatric hospitals psychology psychotherapy Public/Private public access publication public authorities public authority public bodies Public Bodies Bill public figure public funding public inquiries public inquiry public interest public interest environmental litigation public interest immunity public interest litigation publicity public law unfairness Public Order public powers public procurement Public Sector Equality Duty Public Services Ombudsman Putin putting the past behind quango quantum quarantine Queen's Speech queer in the 21st century R (on the application of) v Joint Committee of Primary Care Trusts & Anor [2012] EWCA Civ 472 R (on the application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department & Ors [2011] EWCA Civ 895 R (on the application of) v The General Medical Council [2013] EWHC 2839 (Admin) R (on the application of EH) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWHC 2569 (Admin) R (on the application of G) v The Governors of X School Rabone Rabone and another v Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust [2012] UKSC 2 Race race relations Rachel Corrie racial discrimination Racial equality radio radiotherapy Radmacher Raed Salah Mahajna Raed Saleh Ramsgate randomised controlled trial rape rape case raptors Ratcliffe 6 Ratcliffe on Soar Ratcliffe power station rating rationality rcs RCW v A Local Authority reasonableness reasons reasons challenges recent case law and news Recent posts reception conditions recognition of judgments recreational rights Redfearn v UK referendum reform refugee applications refugee crisis refugee status refusal of treatment Registrar of Births Deaths and Marriages registration regulatory rehabilitation of offenders Reith Lectures Re J (A Child: Disclosure) [2012] EWCA Civ 1204 relgious freedom Religion religion in the courts religious beliefs religious discrimination religious freedom religious prosecution remedies renewables subsidies rent repeal reporting restrictions representation reproductive rights reproductive technologies reproductive wrongs rescue rescuer's claim resettlement of offenders resource allocation respect for family life responsibility in tort restrictions on exports restrictions on liberty results 2010 resuscitation retrospective application of the Human Rights Act retrospective legislation retrospective penalty retrospectivity rev paul nicholson reynolds Reynolds defence Re [2012] EWCA Civ 1233 richard III Richard O'Dwyer right of appeal rightsifno RightsInfo rights of children Right to a fair hearing right to a fair trial right to a home right to a remedy right to artistic expression right to a student loan right to autonomy right to autonomy and privacy right to die right to dies right to die with dignity right to dignity right to education right to expression right to family life right to food right to free enjoyment of possessions right to information right to liberty right to life right to peaceful enjoyment of property Right to Privacy right to private and family life right to refuse treatment right to respect for private life right to silence right to strike right to swim right to truth right to vote Rihanna Rio Ferdinand riots ripa rise of fascism risk risk assessment rival supermarkets Roma Roman Catholic Roman Catholic Church roman catholic schools Romania Rooney's Gold roundup roundup ready Royal Brompton and Harefield NHS Foundation Trust royal dutch petroleum royal name Royal Oper House Royal Prerogative rule of law Rupert Jackson Rusal Russia russia and human rights Russian Federal Security Service Rutherford Ryanair s sadie frost Safari same-sex same sex parents same sex partnerships same sex relationship sanctions set aside sanctity of life Sandiford Sapiens Sarah Ferguson sark satire saudi arabia Savage (Respondent) v South Essex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust Saville Report schedule 7 schizophrenia school building school surveillance schrems science scientific atheism scientific research scientology Scoppola Scotland Scotland Act Scotland Act 1998 Scotland Bill Scottish Government Scottish Human Rights Commission scottish landlord and tenant Scottish Parliament SCOTUS sea fishing seals Seal v UK search engines search powers secondary legislation secondary smoking secrecy Secretary of State Secretary of State for the Home Department v AP secret courts secret criminal trial secret evidence secret justice Secret trials sectarianism secularism security security cameras security services security vetting Sedar Mohammed segregation Select Committee on AI self-defence self-incrimination seminar sentencing September 11 serco serious harm sermon Seroxat service outside jurisdiction set-off Sewel Convention sex abuse sex ban sex ban low IQ sex offender Sex offenders sex register sexual abuse Sexual Offences sexual orientation sexual orientation regulations SFO investigation sfo unlawfulness shaker aamer Shamima Begum sham marriage shared residence order Sharon Shoesmith shetland shipping shipwreck Shirley Chaplin shooting shoulder shrug should trees have rights SIAC sihkism Simon Singh sir alan ward Sir Nicholas Wall Sir Peter six months rule slander slaughterhouses slavery smacking small claims court small solar Smith Smith & Ors v The Ministry of Defence [2012] EWCA Civ 1365 smog smoking ban Snyder v Phelps social and economic rights social benefits social housing socialite social media social security law social welfare social workers Solicitorsfromhell website solitary confinement soma somali pirates sources South Africa south african constitution sovereignty Sovereignty clause soviet union soybean Spanish properties spare room subsidy special advocate special advocates species specific performance spending cuts spielmann squatters Standing standing rules starvation state immunity statelessness statute statutory power Statutory purpose stay of execution stem cell research stem cells stem cell therapy Stephen Gough stephen sedley stepping hill hospital Sterilisation steve macqueen Steven Neary stobart-law stop and search stop powers Stormont Assembly storms Strasborug Strasbourg Strasbourg Court strasbourg damages pirates strasbourg law Strasbourg terminology strategic environmental assessment strike strike out Strikes student loans sturgeon subsidies Sugar v BBC suicide suicide act 1961 super injunction super injunctions supermax prisons superstition Supreme Court Supreme Court Live Supreme Court of Canada Supreme Court Scotland surgery surrogacy surrogacy arrangement surveillance swine flu Syria systemic violence Take That tallinn tariff Taser Tax tax avoidance tax discrimination tchenguiz technology Telegraph telephone preference service television justice tenancy tent city termination termination of pregnancy terror asset freezing Terrorism terrorism act terrorism act 2000 terrorism legislation terrorism prosecution terrorist finance terrorist threat terry pratchett Tesla testamentary dispositions The Bike Project the Catholic church The Corner House theism The Law in These Parts therapy Theresa May the right to privacy The Stig The Sun third countries third party appeals three way case time limits time limits in human rights Tobacco tobacco cartels Top Gear tort Torture torture inquiry totally without merit TPIM TPP tracking trade trade secrets trades unions trade union congress Trade Unions transexual transsexual transsexuals travel travellers travel restrictions treason treatment treaty treaty accession trial by jury trolling TTIP TTM v London Borough of Hackney & Ors Tugendhat tumour Turkey tweeting in court Twitter twitter in court Twitter Joke Trial UK UK citizenship uk constitution UK election UK Human Rights Blog UK Human Rights Roundup UKIP UK Jewish Film Festival ukraine UK Supreme Court UK Uncut ultra orthodox jews ultra vires UN unable to vote unacceptable behaviour policy unaccompanied minors unborn child UN Convention on the Rights of the Child unelected judges unemployment unfair consultation unfair dismissal unfairness at hearing Unison Unite United Against Fascism Group United Kingdom United Nations United States United States v Windsor universal declaration of human rights universal jurisdiction Universal Periodic Review University University Fees university of east anglia University of Southampton unjust and oppressive unlawful arrest unlawful detention unpaid work schemes UN Resolution unsolicited calls UPR US aviation US Constitution use as of right US Supreme Court vaccination Valkyries variants veganism vehicle breakdown vetting and barring vicarious liability victim victim status Victoria Climbie victorian charter Vienna airport vigilantism villagisation vinton cerf violence violist visa scheme vivisection voluntary euthanasia Volunteers voter compensation voters compensation voting voting compensation vulnerable Wagner Wakefield Wales War war correspondents ward of court War Horse water utilities Watts Wayne Rooney Websites welfare of child welfare of children welfare of the child welfare state welsh bill western sahara whaling What would happen if the UK withdrew from the European Court of Human Rights whimbrel whisky Whistleblowing WHO who is JIH whole gene sequencing whole life orders whorship Wikileaked cable Wikileaks wiklleaks Wild Law wildlife Wildlife and Countryside Act will William Hague William Marbury wills wind farms wind turbine Winterbourne View witchcraft withdrawal of treatment wolves women's rights Woolas worboys Workers working time directive wrongful birth wrongful conception wrongful life WTO wuhan X AND OTHERS v. AUSTRIA - 19010/07 - HEJUD [2013] ECHR 148 X Factor XX v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWCA Civ 742 X Y and Z v UK Yemshaw Yildirim v Turkey Your freedom website YouTube yukos Yuval Noah Hariri Zakir Naik Zanu-PF Zero Hours Contracts ZH (Tanzania) v Secretary of State for the Home Department Zimbabwe Zimbabwe farm invasions ZN (Afghanistan) (FC) and others ZZ [2015] CSIH 29 [2015] CSOH 168 £750

Disclaimer


This blog is maintained for information purposes only. It is not intended to be a source of legal advice and must not be relied upon as such. Blog posts reflect the views and opinions of their individual authors, not of chambers as a whole.

Our privacy policy can be found on our ‘subscribe’ page or by clicking here.

%d bloggers like this: