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De-Winter Heald v Brent LBC [2009] EWCA Civ 930

By Oxbridge Law TeamUpdated 04/01/2024 07:01

Judgement for the case De-Winter Heald v Brent LBC

  • Question of whether it was contrary to Article 6 for reviews of a council’s decision on housing applications to be contracted out to a private company, hired by the council for the purpose.

  • CA said it didn’t breach Article 6 

Brunton-Stanley LJ

  • He adopts the Begum reasoning that, provided the reviewer is subject to judicial control then Article 6 is not breached, and that a review performed by a contracted out TP is no less independent than a review carried out by a council officer, as in Begum.

  • The test for apparent bias is well established:

Would a fair-minded and informed observer conclude that there was a real possibility, or a real danger, the two being the same, that the tribunal was biased?

  • This was not made out, even though TP’s website boasted of carrying out 3,500 reviews with ‘unparalleled success’, which CA naively interpreted to mean successfully completed in a fair manner, rather than rejected in a court proof manner, (which is what a council would want so it cant be JRed and can avoid having to give out housing if it cant afford to do so.). 

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