Parole Board has the power to appoint litigation friends

Parole Board has the power to appoint litigation friends

CategoryNews Author Alexander Ruck Keene, Jack Holborn Date

EG (by his litigation friend the OS) v 1) Parole Board; 2) SoS for Justice; & others [2020] EWHC 1457 (Admin)

The High Court has found that the Parole Board Rules 2019 permit the appointment of litigation friends for prisoners who lack capacity to participate in Parole Board proceedings. Proceedings were brought by a prisoner who lacked capacity, alleging systemic failures preventing him challenging his detention following recall to prison. The Court dismissed that challenge, but found that there had been a breach of his Article 5(4) rights due to the delay in determining his case. It also found that the prisoner’s solicitors could not be expected to act without a litigation friend being appointed to instruct them in the absence of further safeguards akin to those in the Mental Health Tribunal.

Jack Holborn represented the Secretary of State for Justice and the Lord Chancellor. Alex Ruck Keene appeared for the Law Society intervening.

A link to Alex Ruck Keene’s longer article on the decision can be found here.

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