Intrinsic and Extrinsic Aids


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  • Created by: Charlotte
  • Created on: 02-01-12 12:54

Intrinsic Aids

Intrinsic Aids found within the Act & supply guidance.

Titles: short title - name of the Act,

           long title - explains what the Act is trying to achieve. E.g. - Abortion Act 1967,   referred to in Royal College of Nursing V DHSS, where the courts had to decide whther or not changes in the way abortions were carried out were in breach of the Act.

Marginal Notes and Headings: marginal notes are usually added by the person drafting the Act and some sections of the Act also have headings. Both provide guidance.

R V Tivnan - a marginal note was referred to to help judges decide whether Parliaments intention was to deprive drug dealers of assets equivalent in value to the proceeds obtained from drug dealing, and not necessarily just those purchased directly from the proceeds of the drug dealing.

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Schedules - found at the end of the Act & contain detailed clarification. E.g. schedule 2 of the Unfair Contract Terms Act 1977 which outlines the tests for determining the principle of reasonableness.

Interpretation Sections - Most Acts now contain them. E.g. s10 of the Theft Act 1968 which when reffering to the use of 'a weapon of offence' in aggravated burglary then defines it as 'any article made or adapted for the use of causing injury'.

Other Parts Of The Act - Judges can refer to other parts of the Act they may think is relevant. E.g. R v Bloxham where the meaning of the words 'another person' was established by reffering to what the words meant elsewhere in the Theft Act 1968.

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Advantages of Intrinsic Aids

An advantage of using intrinsic aids is they are found within other Acts & cases so therefore you can rely upon them.

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Extrinsic Aids

External Aids - Documents judges refer to, to help them with the Act.

Interpretation Act 1978 - Contains meanings of words that will apply to all Acts. s6 states singular words = plural & he = she & vice versa.

Dictionaries - Discover what words mean. E.g. cheeseman, used 1847 OED to define what 'street' & 'passenger' meant.

Coltman v Bibby Tankers Ltd, is a ship equipment? Dictionaries didn't result in unanimous views on if a ship was classed as equipment. Court of Appeal (COA) referred to OED & said it couldn't but Lord Oliver said there was nothing stopping it. 

Earlier Acts & Cases - judges will follow decisions in previous case law but can also refer to older Acts. E.g. Royal Crown Derby Porcelain Co. Ltd v Raymond Russell - interpreted words used in Acts by referring to similar words used in an earlier Act.

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Explanatory Notes - Provide guidance on complex parts of the bill & since 1999 all gov. bills are accompanied by explanatory notes.

Official Publications - Courts can use white papers but there could be problems due to amendments. E.g. Black Clawson this case said official documents could only be used to discover the mischief.

Hansard - The record of all debates in parl. Davis v Johnson - Hansard could not be used to help judges.

Pepper v Hart -

1) Wording in statue = ambiguous, obscure or leads to absurdity.

2) Can only use hansard in the three situations above.

3) The statements relied upon are clear.

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