eu law

Laughing gas and the Psychoactive Substances Act

September 1, 2017

It’s been reported that some prosecutions under the Psychoactive Substances Act 2016 have collapsed recently, at Southwark and Taunton Crown Courts. The Taunton case at least was about the section 7 offence of possession with intent to supply a psychoactive substance, and both cases related to nitrous oxide—or “laughing gas”. The cases have led to a […]

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Will Brexit rights have direct effect? The Human Rights Act may show us the answer

August 23, 2017

The government published its latest “future partnership paper” today on “Enforcement and dispute resolution”, and most of the attention it’s gathered—and the government’s spin—has been about its “dispute resolution” aspect. In other words, what role the European Court of Justice may have in the UK’s future relations with the EU. But I want to focus on the […]

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Why the High Court got the law wrong about Brexit

November 4, 2016

Some reactions to the High Court’s judgment in the article 50 case, R (Miller) v Brexit Secretary, have been ugly, excessive and ridiculous. It’s excessive too to see the judgment as blocking Brexit, or as creating a constitutional crisis. It does neither thing. I’ve no doubt that if the judgment is upheld on appeal to […]

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Article 50, and UK constitutional law

June 27, 2016

If you’ve been following closely news about Britain’s EU referendum and its aftermath, you’ll probably have heard of article 50 of the Treaty on European Union which makes provision for a member state to leave the EU and lays down an extendable two-year period for a withdrawal agreement. THE TEXT OF ARTICLE 50 Here it is: […]

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What Boris told us about the “sovereignty plan”

March 7, 2016

Since I wrote about David Cameron’s “sovereignty plan”, it seems to have been forgotten. It’s clear the idea was aimed at keeping politicians in the Remain camp, and has failed. @carlgardner I understand it is an utter mess, and that it is hoped we all forget it ever happened.#journalism — David Allen Green (@DavidAllenGreen) February […]

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What is Parliamentary sovereignty, anyway?

February 23, 2016

As we await David Cameron’s sovereignty plan this week, it might help to explain what we mean by “Parliamentary sovereignty”. When we talk about Parliamentary sovereignty, we don’t mean a general notion of political sovereignty—a nation’s right to be recognised as a state, and its rulers’ power within its borders. All states have sovereignty in […]

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Could Greece take Europe to court?

July 1, 2015

Could a desperate Greece go to court over its financial dispute with Europe? The crisis is more about politics and finance than it is about law. But some reports have suggested Greece might take legal action. So let’s look at the relevant legal texts, and some ways in which – theoretically, anyway – Greece could take its case to European Court of […]

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Same-sex marriage: the US, Europe and the Obergefell questions

June 25, 2015

The US Supreme Court’s opinion in Obergefell v Hodges – it may come out today, or next week – will be historic whatever it decides. The main question is whether the Fourteenth Amendment to the US Constitution with its guarantee of the “equal protection of the laws” requires states to allow same-sex marriage. Either it […]

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Proportionality, at length: the Supreme Court’s “QASA” ruling

June 24, 2015

The Supreme Court has in today’s judgment in R (Lumsdon) v Legal Services Board ruled lawful the Quality Assurance Scheme for Advocates, as approved by the Legal Services Board. The scheme will require advocates to seek accreditation, which will require performance assessment by trial judges. The judgment’s unsurprisingly been welcomed by the Legal Services Board, […]

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The Prince Charles letters judgment – in a few sentences

March 26, 2015

For a while I’ve wondered if it might be helpful to summarise key Supreme Court and other major judgments in a few sentences. So I thought I’d have a go at it as an experiment, while I’m gathering my fuller thoughts on today’s Supreme Court judgment. Here, then, is my effort at a bite-sized summary […]

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