We have a very important announcement to make.
In our last update, we told you that discussions were taking place between our lawyers and those representing the Ombudsman – and that WASPI’s position remained that the best outcome in the judicial review would be an early settlement in which the Ombudsman accepted his Stage 2 report into the injustice suffered by WASPI and other 1950s born women should be reconsidered.
Those discussions concluded at the end of last week. They were very productive and have led to an agreement between the Ombudsman and WASPI that the judicial review claim should be settled. The settlement agreement has now been submitted to the Court for approval. It takes the form of a draft Court Order and an agreed Statement of Reasons which are here.
In summary, under the settlement:
- the Stage 2 report will be ‘quashed’ (so it will have no legal effect anymore and will have to be reconsidered);
- the Ombudsman accepts the criticisms we made of the Stage 2 report meant it was “legally flawed” and so the reconsideration will focus on those parts of the Stage 2 report;
- the draft Stage 3 report (which discussed what remedies, including compensation, should follow from the flawed Stage 2 report) will have to be reconsidered too; and
- the Ombudsman will pay some of WASPI’s legal costs.
The Court has to approve the settlement for the Stage 2 report to be quashed, but we and the Ombudsman have asked the Court to give it urgent attention.
This is a huge victory for WASPI – and 1950s born women. It will maximise the chances of compensation for the DWP’s maladministration being decided on a proper basis which recognises the full extent of the injustice.
We will send out a further update very soon with answers to key questions about the settlement.
The most important thing to say now, however, is this – thank you so much.
WASPI has been vindicated. But without your contributions, the judicial review would not have been possible and 1950s born women would have been stuck with a report on the injustice they suffered which the Ombudsman now unequivocally accepts is “legally flawed”.