On Monday 18 April, the UK’s Supreme Court held unanimously that the government's proposed civil Legal Aid residence test was ultra vires and unlawful. The test case split the lower courts: last November, the Court of Appeal overturned a three-judge Divisional Court judgment that the test was unauthorised by Parliament, discriminatory and impossible to justify. The seven-Justice Supreme Court (Lord Neuberger, Lady Hale, Lord Mance, Lord Reed, Lord Carnwath, Lord Hughes and Lord Toulson) has now found the test was unlawful after just 10 minutes of deliberation, although written judgments will be handed down in due course.
The challenge was brought by pioneering legal charity, the Public Law Project. The Children’s Commissioner for England was given permission to intervene at each stage of the litigation in support of the Project’s appeal, represented by Paul Bowen QC instructed by Freshfields, acting pro bono. &nbnbsp;
For a link to the Supreme Court Website see here