Judicial review is a court proceeding in which a judge reviews the lawfulness of a decision made by a public body. In the case of military personnel, it could mean challenging a decision made by the Ministry of Defence, disputing a Coroner’s verdict or challenging the actions of other organisations within the Armed Forces.
Hodge Jones & Allen has a long-standing and successful record of challenging decisions taken by public bodies, which affect military personnel. We passionately believe that military authorities should be held to account when they fail our servicemen and women in the forces. Our specialist expertise means that often we can persuade the authorities to reconsider their decisions or change course, before cases even reach court. However, we have fought and won judicial reviews which have been vigorously defended by the Ministry of Defence and other bodies.
How can we help?
We explore every legal avenue to overturn unfair decisions and we are known as a leading firm for bringing judicial reviews on behalf of military personnel. Our solicitors can help you challenge decisions, procedures or failure to act appropriately, in these instances:
1. Coroner inquest verdicts
2. Refusal by the armed forces to disclose information to an inquest
3. Breaches of human rights law
4. Refusal to make payment for injuries
5. Failure to investigate complaints, for example in relation to allegations of bullying, harassment, assault and discrimination
6. Refusal to discharge someone who has Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
7. Challenging decisions on compensation
8. Failures to prosecute or investigate crimes
Our experience of military cases ranges from high profile judicial reviews to very many less well known, but no less complex or important cases.
If there is a decision you want to challenge, it is important to act quickly. There are strict time limits for launching a judicial review, usually within three months, although in some cases the review must be brought sooner. Please contact us as soon as possible so we can help.
Snatch Land Rover
We won the right to a judicial review of the Government’s refusal to hold a Public Inquiry into the use of Snatch Land Rover vehicles in Iraq. The judicial review was brought on behalf of families who lost loved ones killed in Iraq in these inadequately armoured vehicles. The families’ claim was that troops should not have been using Snatch Land Rovers in Iraq, when they were so poorly equipped to protect against threats such as roadside bombs. The Ministry of Defence subsequently recommended the families should request the Iraq Inquiry to investigate the use of Snatch Land Rovers. Following concerns raised at the Iraq Inquiry, the Government announced it would spend £100m replacing the Snatch Land Rover with an improved armoured patrol vehicle.
Private Jason Smith
Following a lack of disclosure by the Ministry of Defence, we brought a judicial review to challenge the verdict of an inquest into the death of Private Jason Smith, who suffered fatal heatstroke while serving in Iraq in 2003. This resulted in the Supreme Court quashing the verdict and led to a second inquest which found that the risk of death could have been reduced by adherence to policy on heat illness, in terms of climatic monitoring, hydration and medical treatment, and by the availability of air-conditioned accommodation and vehicles. We won substantial damages and an apology from the Ministry of Defence for his mother, Catherine Smith.
Our Judicial Review Solicitors are backed by nearly four decades of experience. Our legal practice and team of Military Claims Solicitors have a strong track record of achieving the best possible results. For expert legal advice use our contact form or call us on 0808 250 6017 today.