Guidance, UTIAC

Guidance on Litigation Privilege

In R (on the application of the Secretary of State for the Home Department) v First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) (Litigation Privilege; First-tier Tribunal) [2018] UKUT 243 (IAC) an presidential panel fo the UTIAC gave the following guidance:

(1)                Whether or not to entertain an application for judicial review is a matter that falls within the Upper Tribunal’s discretion, applying well-known principles that apply also in the High Court. Where there is an alternative remedy it would only be in the rarest of cases that the Upper Tribunal would consider exercising its jurisdiction to grant permission to bring judicial review proceedings.

(2)                There is a high threshold to be overcome before the Upper Tribunal will entertain an application for judicial review in challenging an interlocutory decision of the FtT. Once the very high threshold is met it is not necessary for each of the grounds to reach that threshold.

(3)                Litigation privilege attaches to communications between a client and/or his lawyer and third parties for the purpose of litigation. It entitles the privileged party not to disclose information even if it is relevant to the issues to be determined in a court or tribunal. Proceedings in the First-tier Tribunal are sufficiently adversarial in nature to give rise to litigation privilege. The fact that human rights issues are in play does not mean litigation privilege has to be balanced against those issues

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