In 2021 Pogust Goodhead were successful in forcing the UK government to U-turn a decision about the costs vulnerable people were incurring as part of the hotel quarantine policy.
“It’s a fantastic outcome for everyone and we are hopeful that our clients will be able to seek some level of redress for the debt and financial hardship they have had to endure because of the cost of quarantining,” Tom Goodhead, Global Managing Partner said.
The policy change would not have been made possible without the help of the Pogust Goodhead team and all those who supported our judicial review.
In response to the news in 2020 that the Government would be enforcing a mandatory hotel quarantine policy, Pogust Goodhead launched a legal challenge to stand up for the human rights of those entering the UK.
The judicial review of the controversial hotel quarantine policy called on the Government to address flaws in charging those of low or no income or who may not have sufficient financial means for any reason.
From the very beginning, we argued that it was not only unfair but also unlawful. Now, the government has committed to introducing a process where people can apply for a fee waiver or reduction in costs on the grounds of financial hardship.
Tom said “When we started the firm, our priority was to make a difference in people’s lives. My team are so passionate about doing this that they bring me cases they want us to fight almost daily.”
One of the key elements of the challenge was the unlawfulness of the charging system for the hotel quarantine policy. The imposition of the fixed fee of £1,750 or more on anyone travelling to England from a “red list” country did not take into account individual circumstances or a person’s ability to pay.
The policy discriminated against people from low or no-income backgrounds.
“As Managing Partner, it’s my job to decide which cases we take on and which ones we just don’t have the resources for,” Tom Goodhead said.
“It is the hardest part of my role and sometimes we have to say no if we know there is little chance we will be paid for our work.
“But, when we heard the stories of the people impacted by the fixed fee for hotel quarantine, I knew we had to help as much as we could, regardless of whether we could get our costs back.”