On 21 July 2017 the President of the Upper Tribunal issued a judgment in the case of TPN (FtT appeals - withdrawal) Vietnam  UKUT 00295 (IAC) clarifying that where an appeal is sought to be withdrawn (by either the appellant or the respondent) the party seeking to withdraw the appeal must provide reasons for the proposed withdrawal, which must in turn be subjected to judicial scrutiny. A judge must consider the proposal, and issue a determination with a brief outline of the reasons for allowing (or refusing) to allow the proposed withdrawal of the appeal.
Until now, where a party seeks to withdraw an appeal, the process has been largely administrative in nature, handled by the Tribunal's clerks. It has usually been enough for an appellant to simply say that they no longer wish to insist upon their appeal, or for the respondent (the Secretary of State) to say that the decision under appeal is being withdrawn. Whilst it has always been good practice to provide a more extensive narrative setting out the reasons for a proposed withdrawal of appeal, this has never been insisted on.
Following the TPN judgment, it looks like it will now be the case that greater detail must be provided by either party, which in turn must be evaluated by a judge who will issue a brief determination.
This may prove to be particularly advantageous to appellants where the Secretary of State seeks to withdraw a decision shortly before an appeal, preventing the appeal from proceeding, as it will ensure that the Secretary of State provides written reasons for this course of action and that those reasons are then evaluated by a judge. This will allow a would-be appellant to place reliance on the determination at a later date should this be required.