Queen’s Bench Division (Divisional Court), Nicola Davies LJ and Jay J,  EWHC 1676 (Admin), 1 July 2022
This was an appeal by way of case stated from the Magistrates’ Court from a conviction of wilfully obstructing or seeking to frustrate a search or examination contrary to Schedule 7 para 18(1)(c) of to the Terrorism Act 2000. The Divisional Court ruled that the conviction could not stand if the decision to search or examine breached the EqA. The Court further ruled that, if there was evidence of unlawful discrimination, it would be for the Crown to satisfy the court that there was no unlawful discrimination.
Supreme Court,  UKSC 33,  1 WLR 3863, 23 July 2021
Lord Hodge, DP, Lord Briggs, Lady Arden, Lords Hamblen and Leggatt
In this important case the Supreme Court ruled on the approach to s136 of the Equality Act 2010 which sets out the burden of proof in discrimination and harassment claims. The sole judgment was delivered by Lord Leggatt. The main question for the Court was whether the change in wording of the burden of proof provision from the pre-Equality Act 2010 (but post EU-inspired amendments to the legislative provisions transferring the burden of proof) reference to “the complainant [having proved] facts from which the tribunal could …conclude in the absence of an adequate explanation that the respondent” had discriminated to there being “facts from which the court could decide, in the absence of any other explanation, that a person” had discriminated (s136) had made any substantive difference to the test. The Court ruled that it did not. In addition, the Court was asked to consider whether the tribunal had been required to draw adverse inferences from the respondent’s failure to provide witness evidence from any of those responsible for the rejections of the claimant’s various applications. Again the Court ruled that it had not been so required. Continue reading