Mote v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and Another: CA 14 Dec 2007

The appellant was accused of having received income benefits to which he was not entitled. A prosecution was commenced and at the same time he appealed to the tribunal against the decision that there had been an overpayment. The authorities requested an adjournment pending the outcome of the criminal trial. The tribunal refused it. The appellant failed to appear, and the tribunal treated this as an application for an adjournment which it refused and proceeded to hear the appeal in his absence, finding against him. After leave was eventually given, he was convicted at the crown court and was awaiting the result of his appeal. The appellant said the tribunal should not have heard his appeal in his absence, and that the case should have followed the criminal trial.
Held: The balance between criminal and civil proceedings had not altered under the Human Rights Act: ‘the court still enjoys a real discretion whether or not to adjourn. The authorities make clear that a relevant consideration is whether the continuation of the civil proceedings will give rise to a real risk of prejudice to the defendant in the criminal proceedings. If there is a risk of prejudice, then I would expect it to weigh heavily in favour of an adjournment pending the conclusion of the criminal proceedings, but it will not necessarily be decisive. ‘ It as unrealistic to suggest that the court should have pursued a more inquisatorial role to investigate matters on behalf of the appellant where he had declined to assist or attend.
LLoyd LJ, Richards LJ, Sir Peter Gibson
[2007] EWCA Civ 1324, Times 28-Dec-2007
Social Security Administration Act 1992 71, Housing Benefit (General) Regulations 1987 98 99
England and Wales
CitedJefferson Ltd v Bhetcha CA 1979
The plaintiffs brought a claim to recover monies appropriated by a former employee who was also facing prosecution for offences in connection with the same matters. The defendant sought a stay of the application for summary judgement.
Held: . .
CitedV v C CA 6-Oct-2001
The defendant faced an application for summary judgment and also a criminal investigation and possible criminal proceedings in respect of the same matters. He said that to provide a detailed defence to the claim he would have to give information . .
CitedPaal Wilson and Co v Partenreederei Hannah Blumenthal (The Hannah Blumenthal) HL 1983
The House was asked whether a contract to abandon an arbitration might be implied from conduct, or a lack of conduct.
Held: The abandonment of a contract can be effected by the entry of the parties, expressly or by necessary inference from . .
CitedBastick v James Lane (Turf Accountants) Ltd 1979
The court considered an appeal against a refusal of an adjournment of proceedings before the industrial tribunal when criminal proceedings on the same issues were pending.
Held: The court refused to interfere with the exercise of his dicretion . .
CitedBremer Vulkan Schiffbau Und Maschinenfabrik v South India Shipping Corp Ltd HL 1981
Where both parties to a contract are in breach of a mutual obligation owed by each to the other, neither can rely upon the other’s breach as giving him a right to terminate. The Court of Appeal has an inherent power to control its own procedure to . .
CitedPayton, Regina v CACD 26-May-2006
The defendant appealed a conviction of possession of 66 grams of cannabis with intent to supply. Also found were a large number of small bags and pounds 7,000 in cash. The defendant said the cannabis was for his personal use, and the equipment had . .
CitedLevey, Regina v CACD 27-Jul-2006
The defendant appealed against his conviction of manslaughter of his baby son. He said that a family court had previously investigated the same allegations and had explicitly found itself unable to say which of himself and the mother were . .
CitedSecretary of State for Health and Others v Norton Healthcare Ltd and Others ChD 24-Jul-2003
The defendant sought a stay of a civil action against them, saying that the claimant’s own action in pursuing criminal proceedings deprived it of access to former employees who might provide evidence to allow them to defend the claim.
Held: It . .
CitedKerr v Department for Social Development (Northern Ireland) HL 6-May-2004
Wrongful Refusal of Benefits
The claimant was estranged from his family, but claimed re-imbursement of the expenses for his brother’s funeral. The respondent required him to establish that none of his siblings was in a better position than he to pay for the funeral, but he had . .
CitedMongan v Department for Social Development CANI 13-Apr-2005
. .

Cited by:
See AlsoMote v Regina CACD 21-Dec-2007
The defendant appealed his convictions for offences relating to the claiming of benefits, saying that he was immune from prosecution as a member of the European Parliament, and that the verdicts were inconsistent with acquittals on other charges. . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 03 May 2021; Ref: scu.262161