Moss v Royal Borough of Kingston-upon-Thames & Information Commissioner

[2023] EWCA 1438
04 Dec 2023

Public Law and Judicial Review, Local Government, Information Law

The First-tier Tribunal does not have power to commit a person for contempt in the event of a failure to comply with one of its orders. Instead, where a person has been guilty of an act or omission that would constitute contempt of court if it had been committed before a court having power to commit for contempt, the FTT may certify that “offence”, formerly to the High Court, but more recently to the Upper Tribunal. The High Court/Upper Tribunal must consider the matter afresh, both in terms of whether there has been a contempt and what the appropriate sanction should be. The Court of Appeal so concluded in dismissing an appeal against the judgment of Farbey J [2023] EWHC 27 (KB) on an application to commit the Respondent for non-compliance with an order of the FTT. The decision also has important implications for how the FTT in the future should consider applications to certify an “offence” to the Upper Tribunal.

Philip Coppel KC and John Fitzsimons were instructed in this matter by the South London Legal Partnership. Read the judgment here.