24-03-16

Supreme Court refuses permission to appeal in MGN phone hacking cases

The Supreme Court has refused MGN permission to appeal against the record level of damages awarded by Mr Justice Mann to the eight representative claimants (including Clintons’ client, Shane Richie) in May 2015.  In an order dated 22 March 2016, Lords Neuberger, Sumption and Hughes refused permission on the basis that the application for permission to appeal did not raise an arguable point of law. This decision is a game changer for phone hacking cases and privacy claims generally, as Mr Justice Mann’s assessment of privacy damages will now be the starting point for awards in all future misuse of private information cases.  It is also likely to mean that privacy awards will no longer be perceived as the poor relation to libel damages.