The High Court of Justice decision on UK standardized packaging: Key points for other jurisdictions

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The Royal Courts of Justice, including the High Court of Justice of England and Wales. Credit S. Jiong / Wikimedia Commons

The Royal Courts of Justice, including the High Court of Justice and Court of Appeal of England and Wales. Credit S. Jiong / Wikimedia Commons

On 19 May 2016, the High Court of Justice of England and Wales handed down its decision dismissing the legal challenges to the United Kingdom’s tobacco standardized packaging (or plain packaging) laws brought by the four major multinational tobacco companies British American Tobacco, Imperial Tobacco, Japan Tobacco and Philip Morris, and a tipping manufacturer (manufacturer of paper for cigarette filter tips).

The High Court of Justice’s decision is a remarkable document. It runs to 386 pages, dealing meticulously with an enormous volume of evidence and a wide range of legal claims. In a recent paper, we have drawn out what we consider to be the aspects of the High Court of Justice decision of widest relevance to litigation and policy development in other jurisdictions, highlighting concepts or arguments likely to feature in similar legal challenges, or that might inform governments’ consideration of how to develop and implement plain / standardized packaging (or other tobacco control measures).

Download the paper: The High Court of Justice Decision Upholding the UK’s Standardized Packaging Laws: Key Points for Other Jurisdictions

Jonathan Liberman
Jonathan Liberman
Director, McCabe Centre for Law and Cancer