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O’Reilly v Mackman [1983]

Facts

  • A prisoner was charged with disciplinary offences while in prison
  • A claim was bought in private law asserting a public law right
  • At the time, solicitors advised bringing claims with private actions as they were far more likely to succeed than judicial review claims

Issue

  • Could a private law remedy be attained

Decision

  • No, claim failed

Reasoning

  • The exclusive principle: you cannot assert a public law right against a public body with a private law action; the judicial review process exists to ensure that public bodies are protected
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