The Privy Council gave judgment on 21 November 2019 in the case of Mauritius Shipping Corporation Ltd v Employment Relations Tribunal and others  UKPC 42. It dismissed the Mauritius Shipping Corporation’s appeal against the decision of the Supreme Court refusing it leave to bring an application for judicial review challenging the decision of the Employment Relations Tribunal in respect of a reduction of its workforce. The Supreme Court refused leave on the grounds that the judicial review application had not been made promptly, although it had been filed within three months of the Tribunal’s decision. The Supreme Court found that the case required greater expedition, referring to the statutory framework which imposed a short time limit on the Tribunal’s resolution of complaints relating to redundancy, thus recognising the importance of expedition in such cases. Delay, in the Court’s view, was likely to cause financial hardship as the award of monetary compensation awarded to the redundant workers by the Tribunal remained unsatisfied pending the judicial review proceedings. The Privy Council declined to interfere with the Supreme Court’s decision, finding that it was entitled to take into account the financial hardship likely to be caused to the redundant workers by delay. It was emphasised that that an applicant could not rely upon having three months in which to launch a judicial review application, the primary requirement being that of promptness.
Hafsah Masood (instructed by Royds Withy King) appeared for the Employment Relations Tribunal.