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MoJ Costs Protection Proposals “Create Uncertainty”

Dec 10, 2015

Further information
Jill Crawford

UKELA litigation specialists have expressed concerns about the uncertainty they believe will arise if the Ministry of Justice’s (MoJ) proposals on Costs Protection in Environmental Claims are implemented. The consultation that closed today seeks views on further changes to the rules relating to costs protection in certain environmental challenges, governed by the Costs Protection Regime. “The government claims that the proposals contained in the consultation are aimed at providing greater flexibility, clarity of scope and certainty within the regime. “ said Jill Crawford, Convenor of UKELA’s Environmental Litigation Working Party. “We believe that, if the proposed changes are implemented, they will serve only to create uncertainty amongst all parties in litigation - including developers and respondents - as well as applicants. We also fear that they will cause delays in the court system and encourage an increase in satellite litigation.”

In addition, UKELA considers that proposals will put the UK at odds with EU legislation and compliance with Aarhus and the Public Participation Directive. “It is important that changes to the costs rules should meet the requirements of the Aarhus Convention” continued Jill “ and, in particular, that access to justice in environmental cases should not be ‘prohibitively expensive’ as stated in Article 9(4) of the Convention.”

Notes to the editors:

The UK Environmental Law Association aims to make the law work for a better environment and to improve understanding and awareness of environmental law. UKELA’s members are involved in the practice, study or formulation of Environmental Law in the UK and the European Union. It attracts both lawyers and non-lawyers and has a broad membership from the private and public sectors.

UKELA prepares advice to government with the help of its specialist working parties, covering a range of environmental law topics.

For further information on UKELA’s work, please visit: www.ukela.org

For specific press and media queries in relation to this news release, please contact: Jill Crawford, Convenor of UKELA’s Environmental Litigation Working Party on jill.crawford@blmlaw.com

UK Environmental Law Association - Better law for the environment
Registered charity 299498; company registered in England number 2133283
Registered office: One Glass Wharf, Bristol, BS2 0ZX

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