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In re HK

[1967] 2 QB 617

Case summary last updated at 07/01/2020 10:51 by the Oxbridge Notes in-house law team.

Judgement for the case In re HK

R was an immigrant settled in the UK and as such was allowed to bring any children aged below 16 into the country to live with him. He arrived at the airport with his son, H, who he claimed was 15. The chief immigration officer denied H entry on the basis that both he and the airport medical officer considered H to be over 16, and the birth certificate H produced stated a nonexistent date as his DoB (feb 29th 1951). R sought judicial review. CA denied R’s claims, saying that although the immigration officer had to comply with natural justice, the father and son both knew of the rule regarding age and had ample opportunity to try and convince the immigration officers of H’s age. 
 
Lord Parker CJ: even if the officers weren’t acting in a judicial/quasi judicial capacity, they still had a duty to act fairly and hearing the immigrant out. This duty is not simply being impartial: it is to act fairly. Insofar as “the circumstances of any particular case allow, and within the legislative framework under which the administrator is working, only to that limited extent do the so-called rules of natural justice apply”. He acknowledges that by extending this duty to cases where the DM is not acting in a judicial capacity he is increasing the area in which natural justice must be applied. 

In re HK crops up in following areas of law