Public Law, Other Civil and Social Security

Chandra has always covered public law, mainly in connection with existing cases.  He has also conducted other civil cases including for Civil Actions against the Police, Housing, Bankruptcy, and the like.  Chandra has also, since his days with the Free Representation Unit, always represented in Social Security cases, though now it tends to be if there is a particular point of law, or for vulnerable groups such as those with disabilities, or asylum seekers.  

R v CPS - Judicial Review, Crime - CPS charged R, a minor with developmental difficulties, after the alleged victim succeeded in persuading the CPS to review the previous decision not to charge.  Following a pre-action protocol letter for judicial review the CPS agreed to withdraw all charges (believed to be the only successful challenge to the victim's right to review thus far).

W v M and F - Civil Action - W sued M and F for assault having previously brought an unsuccessful private prosecution.  M and F advised to counterclaim for malicious prosecution. They successfully defended the assault case and won the malicious prosecution counterclaim for which they were awarded damages.

R v UKCC ex.p CJ [2001] - (Public Law - Judicial Review)
Right to reasons under Common Law for Disciplinary Proceedings in the United Kingdom Council for Nurses and Midwifery (now the Nursing and Midwifery Council)

R v Immigration Appeal Tribunal ex.p Ali Nedim Uslu (CO/5130/98) - (Immigration/Public Law)
"Forthwith" in the Asylum Appeals (Procedure) Rules 1996 means "as soon as they had a reasonable opportunity" (following Bhimji v Chatwani [1991] 1 WLR 989) in the context of a decision to refuse leave to appeal purportedly made in time by the IAT but not sent out to the parties until six weeks after the time limit had expired.

W v LB Richmond – Tenants retained their council house where Local Authority sought to remove them as being too large despite every room being occupied.

Social Security

W v DWP - Social Security - DLA/Overpayment case won in Upper Tribunal after six years as DWP had failed to apply right test applying to person with disabiity.  On return to the First Tier Tribunal overturned overpayment case and gave DLA Moblity award backdated to 2006.  DWP then attempted to revise this decision causing another First Tier Tribunal which enforced the original award backdated to 2006.

Right of Bangladeshi citizen to widow’s benefit – foreign law is question of fact
W had claimed widows benefit following the death of her husband (“H2”) who had worked in Britain for 19 years until his death paying NI contributions all the while. She had been married to H1 but he had divorced her by a “bare” talak in 1971.  In 1973 she married H2 with whom she had had two children though she had never come to Britain. The DSS refused widow’s benefit on the basis that the bare talak was not a valid divorce under Pakistani, East Pakistani or Bangladeshi law and so she had not the capacity to marry H2. At first instance W won on the basis of expert reports on Bangladeshi family law that the marriage was valid as notification procedures for a talak divorce could not be carried out as there was no infrastructure in Bangladesh permitting this due to the civil war. The DSS appealed as all three previous decisions of the Commissioners had not been followed. W won the appeal on the basis that foreign law was a question of fact and so there was no jurisdiction to hear the appeal and the learned Commissioner distinguished all three previous decisions of the Commissioners on the basis of the Claimant's representations as to what the applicable British Family Law was to foreign family law.

Deeming provision for incapacity credits/benefits reverses burden of proof against the Department
Starred decision that established that any applicant for incapacity credits was entitled at the time they received the benefit notwithstanding a provision that said they were to be examined within 12 weeks as to the their eleigibility. Because they received the benefit that meant they were entitled at that stage and therefore the medical examination and any subsequent decision on the claim was a review of the decision by the DSS and subject to the law in that regard, including that the burden of proof reverted to the DSS of showing that the claimant was not entitled to benefit. Relied on subsequently in a similar decision in relation to incapacity benefit and resulted in new legislation.

O & O - C.I.C.B. London - (Criminal Injuries Compensation Board - Negligence Damages)
Damages for Nervous Shock exacerbated by racial nature of an attack on brother of the claimant where assault not actually seen.


Extraordinary Misinformation and Extraordinary Rendition - Index on Censorship (January 2006)
Article on media reporting of extraordinary rendition and the response of the US and UK governments to the exposure of the practice (following two years of research for Reprieve (UK))

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