Independent News and Media Ltd and Others v A: FD 12 Nov 2009

A, an adult and severely disabled, still had remarkable gifts. The newspapers wished to attend and report on proceedings before the Court of Protection.
Held: Proceedings in the Court fell within the range of recognised exception for open justice. It was for an applicant to demonstrate good reason why the article ten rights should be engaged. Article 10 rights were not engaged simply by an application under rule 91. A two stage approach was required. First a good reason needed to be stablished for publicity. Then the court would balance the patient’s privacy rights (article 8) against the media’s article 10 rights. In this case the application passed both tests.
Hedley J decided that ‘the proceedings . . are within the exceptions to the open justice principle and are therefore not immediately subject to it. Accordingly I conclude that the institution of such proceedings does not engage the article 10 rights of the media. That is, of course, not to say that they have no rights as they clearly have a right to apply under rule 91 and PD 13 A. Once they apply they undertake to demonstrate ‘good reason’ for the order. In my judgment that is not synonymous with the immediate engagement of article 10 rights and the court undertaking the conventional balancing exercise between the respective article 8 and article 10 rights. However once ‘good reason’ is established then that balance does indeed have to be undertaken.’

Hedley J
[2009] EWHC 2858 (Fam), Times 17-Nov-2009, [2010] WTLR 55, [2010] 1 FLR 916, [2010] Fam Law 357
European Convention on Human Rights 10, Mental Capacity Act 2005, Court of Protection Rules (SI 2007 No 1744) 90
England and Wales
Cited by:
Appeal fromA v Independent News and Media Ltd and Others CA 31-Mar-2010
The newspapers sought leave to report proceedings before the Court of Protection in connection with a patient unable to manage his own affairs. The patient retained a possible capacity to work as a professional musician. The family wanted the . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Health, Media, Human Rights

Updated: 12 December 2021; Ref: scu.377905