On appeal from: [2014] NICA 11

The Supreme Court unanimously dismisses an appeal by the Northern Ireland Commissioner for Complaints, holding that the Commissioner had (i) no power to recommend the payment of a money sum against an individual who was not a public authority in an investigation under the Commissioner for Complaints (Northern Ireland) Order 1996, art 8; and (ii) no power to make a special report drawing the attention of the legislature to such a person’s failure to comply with a recommendation. The Complaints Commissioner does not have the power to recommend monetary redress – this is because his recommendations are not binding as a matter of private law, and a private individual such as a GP has no relevant duties in public law. Furthermore, a private individual has no means of effectively challenging the Commissioner’s findings on the merits of the case before a court.

For judgment, please download: [2015] UKSC 22
For Court’s press summary, please download: Court’s Press Summary
For a non-PDF version of the judgment, please visit: BAILII

To watch the hearing, please visit: Supreme Court website (8 Mar 2016 morning session), (8 Mar 2016 afternoon session).