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- The Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union has presented the government’s White Paper: Legislating for the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union to Parliament. The White Paper provides an overview of the government’s intentions for the effects of the forthcoming Great Repeal Bill.
- The House of Commons Exiting the European Union Committee has published a report on the government’s White Paper that was published on 2 February 2017: The United Kingdom’s exit from and new partnership with the European Union. This is the third report of the Committee’s initial inquiry into the government’s Brexit negotiating objectives.
- The House of Commons Library has published a briefing paper summarising the Brexit negotiating positions of the UK, the European Council, European Commission and European Parliament at the beginning of the Article 50 process.
- The House of Lords has published a library note providing an overview of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), including the history, structure and membership. The note considers how the UK would trade with the EU under WTO terms, if the UK left the EU without a trade deal.
- The government has published a report following its technical review of the English votes for English laws Standing Orders.
- The Court of Appeal has confirmed that within care proceedings, there is no presumption that translation costs fall on the party who produces the document (Re Z (A Child)).
- The High Court has:
- given guidance on the requirements for placing a child looked after by a Welsh local authority outside the jurisdiction under section 124 of the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 (Re E (A Child));
- clarified that a costs funding order cannot be made under the inherent jurisdiction of the High Court where the parent has been lawfully refused legal aid for legal advice and representation in wardship proceedings in a radicalisation case (HB v A Local Authority and another (Wardship – Costs Funding Order));
- criticised the Government Legal Service, acting on behalf of the Secretary of State for the Home Department, for not promptly deciding and applying to assert Public Interest Immunity (PII) in a radicalisation case. The court confirmed the need to use a closed material procedure and the three-part test for deciding whether PII should be granted (Re C (A Child) (No 2) (Application for Public Interest Immunity)); and
- issued guidance about how parallel extradition proceedings and care proceedings should be managed to ensure the best interests of the child are properly considered (PA v Criminal Court Coimbra (Portugal) and another).
- The Deregulation Act 2015 (Commencement No 7) Order 2017 has been made and came into force on 29 March 2017 to commence provisions under the Deregulation Act 2015.
- The School Governance (Constitution and Federations) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2017 have been made and will come into force on 1 September 2017.
Employment and pensions:
- The Court of Appeal has upheld the decision of the EAT that the use of regulation A19 of the Police Pensions Regulations 1987 for retiring a large number of police officers following budget cuts was justified and not unlawful indirect age discrimination (Chief Constable of West Midlands Police and others v Harrod and others).
- The EAT has decided that the employee liability information that a transferor must provide under TUPE does not have to specify whether an employee’s entitlements are contractual or not. This is because the requirement to provide particulars of employment under section 1 of the ERA 1996 does not distinguish between contractual and non-contractual matters and TUPE does not alter that position (Born London Ltd v Spire Production Services Ltd).
FOI and data protection:
- The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has launched a new set of resources aimed at improving records management in the health sector. The ICO’s audits in a range of health organisations, from large NHS hospitals to small private dentists, prompted the work.
- The Court of Appeal has held that a notice to seek possession of premises occupied by an introductory tenant issued under section 128 of the Housing Act 1996 can consist of multiple documents (London Borough of Islington v Dyer).
Property and planning:
- The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) (Amendment) Order 2017 has been made and came into force on 6 April 2017.
- The Town and Country Planning (Blight Provisions) (England) Order 2017 has been made and will come into force on 21 April 2017.
- The Compulsory Purchase of Land (Prescribed Forms) (National Assembly for Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2017 have been made and come into force on 6 April 2017.
- The Court of Appeal has considered the meaning of the phrase “without express planning consent from the local planning authority first being obtained” in a condition attached to a planning permission (Dunnett Investments Ltd v The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and another).
- The ECJ has:
- handed down a ruling, on questions referred by a Spanish court, on the standard set by EU law for the review of preparatory acts, such as a decision to admit an undertaking to submit a bid in a public procurement procedure (Marina del Mediterráneo, SL,v Consejería de Obras Públicas y Vivienda de la Junta de Andalucía); and
- issued a judgment on a request for a preliminary ruling from the Supreme Court of Lithuania relating to a tender specification for the award of a public works contract for constructing a quay at a Lithuanian port (“Borta” v Klaipėdos valstybinio jūrų uosto direkcija).
Regulation and enforcement:
- The House of Lords Select Committee on the Licensing Act 2003 (LA 2003) has published a post-legislative scrutiny report of the LA 2003, and analysed local authorities’ performance and funding arrangements under its framework.