Judicial Review and statutory Challenges (s288 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990)

As there is no third party right of an appeal in relation to the grant of planning permission, the only route of challenge for an objector to a scheme is judicial review or statutory challenge of a local planning authority's or Secretary of State's decision to grant consent. We are experienced in advising on the prospects of success of the challenge and working with and instructing counsel to prepare the grounds of challenge and production of documents for the court hearing. There are strict timeframes within which a judicial review or statutory challenge must be made so it is key to act quickly and take advice as soon as possible following the grant of planning permission.

At Birketts we can also provide our clients promoting planning applications with advice in relation to the de-risking of a planning application from the threat of judicial review by carrying out a legal audit of the planning application documentation. This is particularly relevant when an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is required where there are strict legal requirements with which an Environmental Statement must comply and a significant number of judicial reviews are founded on failure to adhere to these requirements. When negotiating section 106 agreements it is also important to ensure that planning obligations meet the legal tests of being necessary, directly related to the development and reasonably related in scale and kind to the development to avoid the risk of the decision becoming challengeable.

We are also able to advise in relation to bringing a statutory challenge to the adoption of local plans where there are concerns that there are procedural requirements that have not been complied with.