Law Reform

Revision notes on law reform

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  • Created on: 02-01-11 22:23
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Law Reform;
Overseeing UK law.
Ensuring that law makes sense, is relevant & effective.
Changing law to satisfy this.
Parliament; has a major say in new laws.
Queen's Speech; Offers a speech to Parliament every November, influencing new laws. She
uses the words "my Government will".
Judges; Decide points of law in cases, putting Law into regulation. A new point of law allows
them to make new law.
Public Opinion; if people are strong about law change then the Government may bow.
Media; Helps to bring the public opinion to the Governments attention.
Pressure Groups; cause Government to consider areas of the law.
Lobbying; groups persuade individual MP's to support cause.
Law Commission
Set up in 19 65 by the Law Commissions Act.
Standing (permanent body).
Consists of 5 legal experts chosen from the judiciary, legal profession & legal academics.
Asked to consider specific areas of law referred to by Lord Chancellor.
Have four main responsibilities:
Indentify areas of law where reform is necessary. Systematically keeping all English law
under review. Proposing areas of reform.
To codify the law. Grouping Act's into one section.
Repeal obsolete laws. Scrapping unnecessary law.
To consolidate & modernise areas of law. Brings together the law on one topic into one
source of law/ one Act. On average, five Consolidation Bills are produced each year.
To receive and consider proposals for law reform, and consult relevant parties.
How does it perform the role?
It researches a particular area
Produce a consultation paper that seeks views on the reform
This describes the current law, sets out the problems, and looks at reform.
Draws up proposals for reform, and possibly a Draft Bill.
Government decides whether to make the proposed reforms.
Is the Law Commission successful?
Limited Success due to a lack of Parliamentary time & willingness to pass their Bill's.
It has however made some changes.
70% of Law Commissions proposals eventually become law.
Royal Commissions;
Are groups of independent experts are asked to consider a specific area of concern.
Set up on an ad hoc basis, to investigate issues & formulate their proposals. Once the report
is finished, the group disbands.
Usually for problem with an existing area of law.
An example of this is the Runciman Commission, set up after the Birmingham 6 were released
(who were wrongly imprisoned for 15 years), to investigate the criminal justice system. This

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Criminal Appeal Act 19 95, & established the Criminal Case Review
Commission to consider cases with possible miscarriage of justice.…read more


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