Jurisdictional error: An alternative approach

Lawbook Co
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Local Government Law Journal, 2008, 14 pp. 109 - 118
Issue Date:
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In judicial review proceedings, under the general law on the ground of traditional jurisdictional error, the reviewing court ordinarily makes a distinction between jurisdictional errors of law on the one hand and non-jurisdictional errors of law on the other. The esoteric distinction between jurisdictional and non-jurisdictional errors of law no longer serves any useful purpose. However, not all errors of law are equally serious. The Anisminic doctrine of extended jurisdictional error is not the answer because it tends to treat all errors of law as being equally serious, which clearly they are not. What is needed is a realistic yet honest approach to judicial review, in which the reviewing court would enquire as to whether or not the particular decision, or the view of the law made by the inferior court or tribunal, could be rationally supported on a construction which the empowering legislation may reasonably be considered to bear.
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