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Standing Quick Notes

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Standing Senior Courts Act 1981, section 31(3): no application of judicial review shall be made unless the leave of the High Court has been obtained in accordance with rules of court; and the court shall not grant leave to make such an application unless it considers that the applicant has a sufficient interest in the matter to which the application relates.' The issue is how we define 'sufficient interest' and Miles draws a useful distinction between 'private rights' and 'public wrongs'.
? If defined narrowly, standing operates only to protect individuals where their material interests have been affected (private rights); if defined broadly, standing operates to protect the public interest (public wrongs). o Private rights - individualistic; public wrongs - communitarian.
? Can also distinguish between dispositive (merely settling the immediate issue) or expositive (giving an explanation as to a wider issue). Feldman argues that the approach depends on identifying a 'constitutional ethic' - a theory as to what judicial review should do will define the standing rules. A. Move Towards a Public Wrongs Model Before Fleet Street Casuals, standing ensured that individual rights, but not broader interests, could be asserted before the courts - it operated restrictively, and inconsistently, dependent on the remedy sought.
? Their Lordships made clear that standing would play a minimal role, as a threshold test for preventing 'abuse by busybodies, cranks and other mischief-makers' (Lord Scarman).
? Notable that the minimised role of standing at the leave stage created the possibility for success for cases such as Rees-Mogg, Greenpeace and WDM. o These go beyond what Cane terms 'associational standing' (where an individual represent a group whose interest align with their own), or 'surrogate standing' (where the applicant solely represents others' interests.
? These might just be considered attenuated versions of private rights model. o These are clearly in the 'public interest' - e.g. Rees-Mogg was permitted to claim because of his 'sincere concern for constitutional issues'. The basis of this expansion is Lord Diplock's dictum in Fleet Street Casuals: there would be a 'grave lacuna in our system of public law if a pressure group... if even a single public spirited tax pater, were prevented by out-dated technical rules... from brining the matter to the attention of the court to vindicate the rule of law and get the unlawful conduct stopped'.
? Seen most recently in Walton - Lord Reed stated that the court's function was not simply 'to redress individual grievances', but it also had a 'constitutional function of maintaining the rule of law.' o Particularly where the issue is of notable importance and there is no interested individual to bring the case themselves (WDM). B. Inconsistency There has been a clear liberalisation of standing, but it does not embrace a full 'citizen's interest' model, so we still appear to lack a 'constitutional ethic'. Rose Theatre Trust is often invoked to suggest a more private right based approach.
? Schiemann J demanded that the applicant demonstrate an interest beyond that of the ordinary citizen in order to have standing.
? However, doubted: o As Cane notes, the logic seems flawed.
? The approach is found on the idea that standing is a requirement designed to prevent 'uncertainty and chaos'.

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