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Case details

Sookhan (Respondent) v The Children’s Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (Appellant) (Trinidad and Tobago)

Case ID: JCPC 2021/0063

Jurisdiction: Court of Appeal of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago

Case summary

Issue

Did the Court of Appeal of Trinidad and Tobago wrongly grant Ms Sookhan permission to bring her claim for judicial review, insofar as her claim (1) was brought too late, (2) would cause substantial prejudice to the child with which it is concerned, and/or (3) is without merit?

Facts

The respondent, Ms Sookhan, is a registered nurse. In October 2015, a young child ("AB") was abandoned by his biological parents at the hospital at which Ms Sookhan worked. AB spent over a year at the hospital, throughout which time Ms Sookhan cared for him.

In November 2016, Ms Sookhan applied to the appellant, the Children’s Authority of Trinidad and Tobago ("the Authority"), to adopt AB. On 13 June 2019, the Authority informed Ms Sookhan that her application form had not been submitted correctly and that AB had since been matched with prospective adoptive parents.

Ms Sookhan sought to challenge the Authority’s decision not to consider her application to adopt AB, by way of a claim for judicial review. At first instance, the High Court of Trinidad and Tobago refused Ms Sookhan permission to bring her claim, on the basis that it was unarguable. Ms Sookhan then appealed, successfully, to the Court of Appeal of Trinidad and Tobago, which decided that Ms Sookhan had an arguable claim that the Authority had acted in a manner which was procedurally unfair.

Parties

Appellant(s)

The Children's Authority of Trinidad and Tobago

Respondent(s)

Ena Sookhan

Appeal

Justices

Lord Briggs, Lady Arden, Lord Stephens

Hearing start date

7 October 2021

Hearing finish date

7 October 2021

Watch hearing
7 Oct 2021 Afternoon session
 

Reporting restrictions

Sookhan (Respondent) v The Children’s Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (Appellant) (Trinidad and Tobago)

Case ID: UKSC 2021/0063

THE BOARD ORDERED that no one shall publish or reveal the name or address of the child who is the subject of these proceedings or publish or reveal any information which would be likely to lead to the identification of the child or of any member of his biological or his prospective or actual adoptive family in connection with these proceedings.