The Relaxation of Representative Standing in Administrative Law: A Side-Effect of Charters of Rights?
(2016) 49 University of British Columbia Law Review 47
57 Pages Posted: 24 Feb 2016 Last revised: 7 Dec 2016
Date Written: February 22, 2016
Since the 1970s there has been a well-documented and rather dramatic liberalisation of the rules of standing in judicial review applications across the common law world. The most notable aspect of this liberalisation has been with respect to representative applicants: those seeking to represent group or public interests. Forty years ago representative applicants were rarely granted standing to challenge administrative actions or law, and today they frequently are. During the same period, there has been a steady infiltration of human rights issues into judicial review cases, resulting largely from the adoption of bills or charters of rights which variously constrain government and legislative action. The concurrence of these two trends has led some to speculate that they are related; and specifically that the liberalisation of standing forms part of a more general ‘righting’ of administrative law. This article explores these suggestions by analysing the relationship between representative standing and rights in three common law jurisdictions, which share a common heritage but very different approaches to rights: the United Kingdom, Australia and Canada.
Keywords: Administrative Law, Standing, Comparative Law, Australian Public Law, Canadian Public Law, UK Public Law
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