36 Emergency Powers Group Newsletter – The 36 Group

‘1. Knowing Your R’s from Your Elbow: Wrongful Convictions in the Time of Coronavirus – Arthur Kendrick & Tom Parker
2. “Repugnant to Ordinary Notions of Fairness”? The Burden of Proof in the ‘Leaving Home’ Offence – Catherine Rose
3. Beyond the Emergency Legislation: Offences of Deliberate Infection – Michael Haggar
4. To Derogate or Not to Derogate: Are the Lockdown Restrictions Compatible with the European Convention on Human Rights? – Nadeem Holland
5. Landlord and Tenant Rights in the Pandemic – Karen Reid
6. Immigration Appeals in the Age of Corona – Tom Wilding’

Full Story

The 36 Group, 2nd June 2020

Source: 36group.co.uk

Lockdown rules: what is allowed in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – The Guardian

‘The latest coronavirus rules, from Monday 1 June, are plentiful and complicated. This is your ultimate guide.’

Full Story

The Guardian, 3rd June 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Conveyancers lobby for furloughing flexibility – Legal Futures

Posted May 28th, 2020 in conveyancing, coronavirus, emergency powers, employment, housing, news by sally

‘Conveyancers and other property stakeholders have called on Chancellor Rishi Sunak to allow them to move staff in and out of furlough on a weekly basis as the home-moving market recovers.’

Full Story

Legal Futures, 26th May 2020

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Return To Work During The Coronavirus Pandemic – Navigating Through The Employment Law Minefield – Hardwicke Chambers

‘With the recent announcement that lockdown measures are to be eased, and those who cannot work from home should return to work, we are likely to see a greater proportion of the workplace slowly return to work. The Prime Minister has announced that those in construction and manufacturing, scientific research, logistics and food production should return to work, once their employers have confirmed that it is safe for them to do so and set a “road-map” for the re-opening of shops, restaurants and other venues as well as workplace specific guidance for working safely during coronavirus.’

Full Story

Hardwicke Chambers, 14th May 2020

Source: hardwicke.co.uk

Ronan Cormacain: Can I go to the park please Dad? Everyday lessons in legal certainty in the English Coronavirus Regulations – UK Constitutional Law Association

‘This post analyses the changes made on 13 May 2020 to the coronavirus social distancing regulations for England. The criterion for analysis is the basic Rule of Law requirement of legal certainty. Certainty allows us to plan our actions, lets the police know what it is they should be enforcing, and most importantly stops us from inadvertently breaking the law. The very limited case-study is the question posed in many households today – can I go to the park please Dad?’

Full Story

UK Constitutional Law Association, 15th May 2020

Source: ukconstitutionallaw.org

Government faces legal action over refusal to publish Sage minutes – The Guardian

‘A millionaire businessman is launching legal action against the government after it refused to disclose minutes of the Sage meetings that informed its decision to impose the coronavirus lockdown.’

Full Story

The Guardian, 16th May 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Coronavirus: 14,000 lockdown-breach fines imposed – BBC News

‘Police in England and Wales have issued more than 14,000 fines for alleged breaches of lockdown laws.’

Full Story

BBC News, 15th May 2020

Source: www.bbc.com

Tom Hickman: A very English lockdown relaxation – UK Constitutional Law Association

‘The changes were made in part by amendment to the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020/350. A note about the unsatisfactory process by which the changes were brought about. The policy was announced by the Prime Minister on television on Sunday night. This was in contravention of the constitutional principle, embodied in the Ministerial Code 9.1 (page 23), that important policy announcements will be made first to Parliament. Draft amendment regulations were then not published until Tuesday afternoon and they came into effect the following day, without any Parliamentary approval. This was possible because the Government used the “emergency procedure” under s.45R of the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984, on the basis that the Health Secretary was prepared to state his belief that, “by reason of urgency, it is necessary to make this instrument without a draft having been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, each House of Parliament”. It is however impossible to understand what that urgency was. After all, the amendment regulations gave effect to a relaxation not a tightening of the lockdown: there is no urgent public health reason for such a step. There is no evident reason why proper procedure could not be complied with and Parliament had to be bypassed. Whilst no doubt many people have been itching to get to a garden centre for weeks, resorting to emergency procedures that delay (and in effect largely remove) Parliamentary scrutiny damages public trust in emergency powers precisely at a time when public trust in such powers is most needed. The episode aggravates and underscores the problem which I and others have previously identified, that the regulations require a bespoke statutory basis and that resorting to the Public Health Act as the legal basis for such regulations is an unsatisfactory and constitutionally suspect expedient.’

Full Story

UK Constitutional Law Association, 14th May 2020

Source: ukconstitutionallaw.org

What are your new rights during England’s lockdown? – The Guardian

Posted May 15th, 2020 in coronavirus, emergency powers, freedom of movement, news by sally

‘The new laws have become increasingly complex as restrictions start to ease.’

Full Story

The Guardian, 14th May 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Simon Halliday, Jed Meers, and Joe Tomlinson: Public Attitudes on Compliance with COVID-19 Lockdown Restrictions – UK Constitutional Law Association

‘In March 2020, the government introduced a set of restrictions to ‘lockdown’ the UK in response to the COVID-19 pandemic (The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020; The Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) (Wales) Regulations 2020; The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2020). These lockdown restrictions form the central plank of a wide range of government interventions, which to date include the 359-page Coronavirus Act 2020, 61 statutory instruments (emerging from 46 different parent acts), and an even greater amount of policy and guidance. The central purpose of the lockdown restrictions is to protect public health, by both containing the rate of infection and protecting NHS capacity to treat the influx of COVID-19 patients. There has been a lively legal debate about the restrictions—described as ‘almost certainly the most severe restrictions on liberty ever imposed.’ In addition to the legal debate, however, we also need a socio-legal analysis. An examination of how the public understand and experience the lockdown, and the significance of these perceptions for compliance, is essential to developing a clear picture of how the lockdown restrictions are working. Understanding the role of law in society, and not only in strict ‘legal’ terms, has rarely been so important.’

Full Story

UK Constitutional Law Association, 8th May 2020

Source: ukconstitutionallaw.org

Court of Appeal rejects challenge over lawfulness of PD51Z staying possession proceedings: report – Local Government Lawyer

‘The Court of Appeal has upheld the lawfulness of Practice Direction 51Z, the Housing Law Practitioners Association (HLPA) has reported.’

Full Story

Local Government Lawyer, 12th May 2020

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

“Repugnant to Ordinary Notions of Fairness”? The Crime of Leaving Your House – The 36 Group

‘On a sunny afternoon in April 2020, a couple sit on the grass in Finsbury Park, North London. A police officer approaches them. A month later, they plead Not Guilty at Highbury Corner Magistrates’ Court to an offence of Leaving/Being Outside Home Without Reasonable Excuse, contrary to Regulations 9(1) and 6(1) of the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (England) Regulations 2020 (as amended). Two months later, they attend court again for trial.’

Full Story

The 36 Group, 24th April 2020

Source: 36group.co.uk

Judge questions coronavirus case against ‘homeless’ London man – The Guardian

‘A judge has questioned the Crown Prosecution Service’s decision to charge a man who said he was homeless with allegedly breaching coronavirus regulations by leaving “the place where he was living”.’

Full Story

The Guardian, 12th May 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Coronavirus Act 2020: Does it permit mandatory vaccinations? – Garden Court Chambers

‘There are multiple human rights and civil liberties implications both globally and domestically arising from the response to COVID-19 and the current crisis. Some of them are very real and concerning. Others are scaremongering and simply not true.’

Full Story

Garden Court Chambers, 1st May 2020

Source: www.gardencourtchambers.co.uk

C19 Possession Proceedings: Current Guidance – Thomas More Chambers

‘On 18 March 2020, it was announced by the government that there would be a ban on evictions for a three-month period (with effect from 27 March 2020), this has presented numerous questions to both landlords, occupiers and owners alike. Set out below is the current position in relation to action arising out of residential property occupation (commercial leases and agreements are subject to different legislative regimes).The information within this article is correct as at 26 April 2020, you are strongly advised to obtain independent legal advice if you are unsure as to your rights and obligations.’

Full Story

Thomas More Chambers, 28th April 2020

Source: www.thomasmore.co.uk

What are the data privacy considerations of Contact Tracing Apps? – UK Human Rights Blog

‘Coronavirus presents a serious threat to society, legitimising the collection of public health data under Article 9:2 (g) of GDPR regulations, which allows the processing of such data if “necessary for reasons of substantial public interest”. Some of this collection will take the form of contact tracing apps, which have been used in containing the spread of coronavirus in countries such as Singapore.’

Full Story

UK Human Rights Blog, 1st May 2020

Source: ukhumanrightsblog.com

Nyasha Weinberg: Parliament must legislate on the government’s plans for contact tracing apps – UK Constitutional Law Association

‘ Today the Joint Committee on Human Rights will take evidence from the Information Commissioner, academics and the CEO of NHSX on the risks to the right to privacy (Article 8 ECHR) if a contact tracing app is introduced to track and slow the spread of the coronavirus. This is helpful scrutiny of the government’s plans. Yet if the government goes ahead with its proposed contact-tracing application it is essential that the processing of large amounts of personal data by the state, even if done in the public interest, needs a clear legal basis in the form of specific legislation.’

Full Story

UK Constitutional Law Association, 4th May 2020

Source: ukconstitutionallaw.org

Children’s Commissioner for England calls for revocation of “unnecessary” regulations relaxing children’s social care protections – Local Government Lawyer

‘The Children’s Commissioner for England, Anne Longfield, has sharply criticised the government’s relaxation of regulations relating to children’s social care, saying she does not believe that they are necessary except in one limited case.’

Full Story

Local Government Lawyer, 1st May 2020

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

Furloughed from work? It pays to know your rights – The Guardian

Posted May 4th, 2020 in company law, coronavirus, emergency powers, employment, news, remuneration by sally

‘The rules of the government’s job retention scheme are complex. We put your questions to an employment specialist to cut through the confusion.’

Full Story

The Guardian, 3rd May 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Make bedside oral wills legal during pandemic, UK campaigners urge – The Guardian

‘Oral wills should be made legal during the coronavirus pandemic in the same way that they are permitted in times of war, say campaigners.’

Full Story

The Guardian, 2nd May 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com