In the August edition of Accountancy Update we reported the decision of the court to restrict access to a statement of case in an action involving the National Policing Improvements Agency (NPIA), so that the statement of case could refer to matters which were confi dential to NPIA. A more recent case is a useful illustration of the court’s determination to preserve, so far as possible, the principle of open justice.
The recent case of G&G v Wikimedia Foundation Inc1 demonstrates the court taking a different approach and confi rms that parties must be specifi c in their applications to restrict access to material by non-parties which would otherwise be available pursuant to CPR 5.4C.
In G&G, Mr Justice Tugendhat was asked to restrict access to the Statements of Case. However, he ordered that the Statements of Case in question should be edited (to remove the reference to the applicants’ names) and held that this was a suffi cient measure to protect them, based on the facts as they were presented to him. He reminded the parties that applicants who were relying on CPR 5.4(4) should limit their requests for restriction to documents to “no more than is necessary and proportionate in the circumstances of the particular case”.