30 April 2024

Administrative Court (Re-)Confirms CMA's Right To Raid Domestic Premises



Bristows logo
We are a hub for litigation, transactions and advice. We don’t work to billing targets, ensuring clients gets the right combination of experts. It’s a rare approach defining the quality of our advice. We recruit inquisitive minds, many with science and technology backgrounds. We are Bristows, seeing things differently for those shaping tomorrow.
Ispoke to GCR on 22 April [full article behind paywall] about the Administrative Court judgment on the CMA's appeal of a judgment...
UK Antitrust/Competition Law
To print this article, all you need is to be registered or login on

Ispoke to GCR on 22 April [full article behind paywall] about the Administrative Court judgment on the CMA's appeal of a judgment in which a warrant to search domestic premises had been refused. In overturning the CAT's original judgment, the Administrative Court shows that the CMA is not subject (as a general matter) to an additional requirement to show that the individual in question has a propensity to destroy documents.

My reading is that the additional checks and balances required by the European Convention of Human Rights are already sufficiently taken into account by the statutory requirement for a warrant to be issued (cf. inspections of corporate premises which can take place on notice without a warrant under s.27 of the Competition Act 1998). The question of an individual's propensity to destroy evidence might however still be relevant in marginal cases, such as where the individual in question is not centrally connected to the suspected cartel (although is still believed to hold documents).

Leaving aside the legal nuances, this judgment firmly reinstates the position that in an age of home-working, individuals within companies need to be aware of the CMA's powers to carry out unannounced inspections on home turf, as well as in the office.

In a statement today, the CMA's chief executive Sarah Cardell welcomed what she described as an "important ruling".

"With the increase in remote-working – and electronic communication – it's essential that we are able to search domestic premises to secure evidence of potential breaches of competition law where appropriate to do so."

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

See More Popular Content From

Mondaq uses cookies on this website. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies as set out in our Privacy Policy.

Learn More