IMUK are delighted to announce that Independent Midwives have secured a cost cap on challenging the NMC ruling preventing IMUK members from working and offering support and care to women and their families.
Mr Justice Ouseley – a very senior High Court judge agreed that the case was of public interest, was arguable, was suitable for judicial review and – most importantly – agreed that without the cost cap the claimant midwives would have had to withdraw the case and give up in face of extraordinarily high costs from the NMC.
The Judge recognised that Independent Midwives have very limited resources and very modest incomes and capped the costs, if we were unsuccessful, to just 10% of the total amount the NMC were predicting. The NMC will be required to make a proper contribution to our legal costs if, as we hope, we win!
The Judge recognised the direct and severe impact on Independent Midwives themselves and the very different nature of working in the NHS versus the IM gold standard of continuity of care to each woman. He also recognised the indirect impact on hundreds of women who could no longer rely on our support and care.
The NMC opposed this order root and branch and this represents a huge victory. Our lawyers – Deighton Pierce Glynn – have worked tirelessly to defend Independent Midwifery at much lower rates than we could have hoped to find anywhere else. We have had amazing support from QCs – with some work even being done free of charge.
This case also sets a precedent and will help others, especially vulnerable and worse off applicants in future, who would otherwise be prevented from seeking justice and challenging decisions they believe to be wrong.
We also have a trial date of 18/19 October – which feels like a long way away but it does give us time to meet the remaining funding gap of £15K. So, can we please ask everyone to do what they can to donate, to ask and involve others and make a big push to fundraise a further £15,000 – we know we can do it with all your wonderful and invaluable support! If you are able to contribute, please visit our Go Fund Me Page.