Parliamentary Soverignty


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  • Created by: Charlotte
  • Created on: 19-12-11 21:36

Parliamentary Sovereignty - Dicey

Question - "Is parliament our most powerful, and important law maker?"

1. Parliament can legislate (pass a law) on any matter it chooses (but must be aware of voters). Case = Act of Settlement 1700, children of King James II, cannot succeed to the throne.

2. No parliament can bind any future parliament, any law can be changed. Case = Statue of Westminster 1931, no future UK statue should extend to law in Dominican countires, Australia, Canada and New Zealand, unless requested and consented. (Countries would refuse, so no point).

3. Cannot be overruled by others, not even judges. Case = British Railways Board V Pickin = Fraud - compulsory purchase, judges couldnt overrule parliament.

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Limitations on Parliamentary Sovereignty

1) European Union - EU has given the UK law on many subjects, we must accept them as were EU members. (Joined in 1973).

Factortame - Spanish fisherman had Spanish made boat but registered it within the UK and has the British flag so they could fish in British waters. They then stole the fish from the UK.The UK passesd the Merchant Shipping Act 1988 - Act requires 75% of the ships owners need to be British if the boat was registered in Britian. The EU decided the Act was un lawful and made Parliament repeal it.

EU does limit parliamentary sovereignty but we could always leave.

2) Human Rights Act 1998 - Every piece of legislation must comply with the Human Rights. Courts can declare legislation as incpmpatible with Human Rights.

H V Mental Health Review Tribunal - H was told to probe he was ready for release, the courts said no against his Human Rights so it was upto the tribunal to prove he shouldn't be released.

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