Publication of the Black Spider Memos: a hollow victory? – Halsbury’s Law Exchange

‘On 13th April, the Guardian were finally able to publish the ‘black spider memos,’ private correspondence between Prince Charles and several government departments between September 2004 and March 2005.’

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Halsbury’s Law Exchange, 18th May 2015

Source: www.halsburyslawexchange.co.uk

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Revised framework document for the National Crime Agency – Home Office

Posted May 8th, 2015 in codes of practice, documents, national crime agency, news by tracey

‘This revised framework document replaces the first framework document signed by the Home Secretary and the director general of the National Crime Agency on 15 October 2013.’

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Home Office, 6th May 2015

Source: www.gov.uk/home-office

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Judge fires costs warning in face of “documentary carpet bombing” – Litigation Futures

Posted May 7th, 2015 in civil procedure rules, costs, disclosure, documents, news by sally

‘A High Court judge has hit out at the “documentary carpet bombing” he faced in a negligence claim before him and warned litigants of the costs consequences that such behaviour can trigger.’

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Litigation Futures, 7th May 2015

Source: www.litigationfutures.com

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GCHQ conducted illegal surveillance, investigatory powers tribunal rules – The Guardian

‘GCHQ, Britain’s national security surveillance agency, has been ordered to destroy legally privileged communications it unlawfully collected from a Libyan rendition victim.’

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The Guardian, 29th April 2015

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

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Ipsa loses court of appeal challenge over MPs’ expenses – The Guardian

Posted April 28th, 2015 in appeals, disclosure, documents, expenses, freedom of information, news, parliament by sally

‘The regulatory body set up after the MPs’ expenses scandal has lost a test case challenge in the court of appeal against an order that it must release copies of receipts and invoices submitted by politicians.’

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The Guardian, 28th April 2015

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

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Transgender father loses court battle over children’s birth certificates – Daily Telegraph

‘She claimed it was discrimination and a breach of her human right to respect for her private and family life not to take the description ‘father’ off the children’s birth certificates.’

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Daily Telegraph, 21st April 2015

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk

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Birdseye and another v Roythorne & Co and others – WLR Daily

Birdseye and another v Roythorne & Co and others [2015] EWHC 1003 (Ch); [2015] WLR (D) 169

‘It remained the case that a person had to establish as a prima facie case that he was a beneficiary before there could be any question of the court requiring a trustee or executor to disclose documents which would be protected by privilege if the applicant were not a beneficiary.’

WLR Daily, 15th April 2015

Source: www.iclr.co.uk

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Changes to the Divorce Process in England and Wales: Q&A – Family Law Week

‘HM Courts & Tribunals Service explain how the forthcoming changes will affect the divorce process in England and Wales.’

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Family Law Week, 15th April 2015

Source: www.familylawweek.co.uk

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R (on the application of Evans) and another (Respondents) v Attorney General (Appellant) – Supreme Court

R (on the application of Evans) and another (Respondents) v Attorney General (Appellant) [2015] UKSC 21 (YouTube)

Supreme Court, 26th March 2015

Source: www.youtube.com/user/UKSupremeCourt

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Why we should see Andrew Lansley’s diary in the run up to 2011 NHS reforms – UK Human Rights Blog

‘Department of Health v. Information Commissioner et al [2015] UKUT 159, 30 March 2015, Charles J read judgment Simon Lewis requested that the Department of Health supply him with copies of the ministerial diary of Andrew Lansley from May 2010 until April 2011, via a Freedom of Information request. Mr Lewis’s interest in all this is not revealed in the judgment, but I dare say included seeing whether the Minister was being lobbied by private companies eager to muscle in on the NHS in this critical period. But such is the nature of FOIA litigation that it does not really look at the motive of the requester – and this case does not tell us what the diary showed. Indeed by the time of this appeal, Lewis was untraceable, and the burden of the argument in favour of disclosure was taken up by the Information Commissioner.’

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UK Human Rights Blog, 10th April 2015

Source: www.ukhumanrightsblog.com

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Home Office confirms that EEA(FM) application form is not mandatory – Free Movement

‘In a useful policy document explaining internal processes within the UK Visas and Immigration department of the Home Office, it is confirmed that applicants for EU free movement documents such as residence certificates, residence cards and family permits do NOT have to use the forms provided by the Home Office.’

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Free Movement, 9th April 2015

Source: www.freemovement.org.uk

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Police watchdog slammed as ‘inadequate’ by adviser to Macpherson Inquiry – The Independent

Posted April 13th, 2015 in budgets, complaints, corruption, documents, inquiries, murder, news, ombudsmen, police, racism by sally

‘Serious questions about the fitness of the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) to investigate far-reaching allegations of police corruption have been raised by a former member of the Macpherson Inquiry. The judge’s investigation is said to have been misled by Scotland Yard about the extent of corrupt police involvement in the 1993 investigation into the murder of Stephen Lawrence.’

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The Independent, 12th April 2015

Source: www.independent.co.uk

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Family Court Key Decision Review: Part 1 – No. 5 Chambers

Posted April 7th, 2015 in care orders, costs, delay, documents, local government, news by sally

‘In the first of a new series of quarterly round ups, Kathryn Taylor reviews some of the key decisions of the family court since December 2014, with a particular emphasis on Local Authority failings.’

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No. 5 Chambers, 30th March 2015

Source: www.no5.com

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Specialist Printing Equipment and Materials (Offences) Act 2015 – legislation.gov.uk

Posted April 2nd, 2015 in documents, forgery, legislation by sally

Specialist Printing Equipment and Materials (Offences) Act 2015 published

Full text of Act

Source: www.legislation.gov.uk

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Alison Young: R (Evans) v Attorney General [2015] UKSC 21 – the Anisminic of the 21st Century? – UK Constitutional Law Association

‘On Thursday 26th March the Supreme Court concluded, to the delight of The Guardian and the dismay of the Prime Minister, that communications between Prince Charles and government Ministers – the so-called ‘black spider memos’ – should be released. This has been a long saga, involving issues of freedom of information, discussion of constitutional conventions surrounding the behaviour of a Monarch in training, which now also includes the principle of legality and the nature of the relationship between parliamentary sovereignty and the rule of law. Such a cornucopia of delights for constitutional lawyers guarantees that the case has earned its place in the ‘Constitutional law Case list Hall of Fame’, with the promise of further delight as the memos, once released and savoured, cast an insight into the relationship between the Crown and the Government.’

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UK Constitutional Law Association, 31st March 2015

Source: www.ukconstitutionallaw.org

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Untangling the spider’s web: Evans at the Supreme Court – Halsbury’s Law Exchange

‘On Friday, 27th March, the Supreme Court handed down a decision which will be as much of interest to public lawyers as information rights practitioners alike. Evans, a journalist for the Guardian newspaper utilised the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA) and the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 to seek the disclosure of letters sent by Prince Charles to seven government departments between September 2004 and March 2005. The departments refused to disclose the letters (so-called “black spider” memos on account of the Prince’s handwriting) on the basis that they were exempt from doing so. In their view the letters represented private correspondence which effectively allowed the Prince to prepare for “kingship.” Evans subsequently complained to the Information Commissioner who upheld the refusal before appealing to the Information Tribunal. The Tribunal held that many of the letters should be disclosed as they constituted “advocacy correspondence.”’

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Halsbury’s Law Exchange, 31st March 2015

Source: www.halsburyslawexchange.co.uk

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The Cat’s Out of the Bag: legal advice privilege and the risks of being caught with a divorce lawyer – Family Law Week

‘Samuel Littlejohns, pupil at 1 Hare Court, examines whether the very fact that a party consulted a lawyer at a given time is privileged information, and the practical consequences of this for practitioners.’

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Family Law Week, 27th March 2015

Source: www.familylawweek.co.uk

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Erol Incedal: Student to be sentenced for possessing bomb manual – BBC News

Posted April 1st, 2015 in documents, explosives, news, sentencing, terrorism by sally

‘A law student cleared of plotting a terror attack is to be sentenced for possessing a bomb-making manual.’

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BBC News, 1st April 2015

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

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Trials of journalists alleged to have paid money to public officials for private documents halted as CPS holds urgent review of its decision to prosecute – The Independent

‘The first of the eight trials involving journalists alleged to have paid money to public officials for private documents and due to take place between now and September, has been adjourned at the Old Bailey.’

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The Independent, 31st March 2015

Source: www.independent.co.uk

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The Tale of the Black Spider: The Supreme Court speaks – UK Human Rights Blog

‘And so, the long legal saga of the Black Spider Letters finally comes to a close.

I last blogged about this case back in October 2012. At that time, the Attorney General had ignited controversy by invoking a little-known power under section 53 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA).’

Full story

UK Human Rights Blog, 27th March 2015

Source: www.ukhumanrightsblog.com

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