What are Statutory Instruments?
Statutory Instruments are:
- rules, orders and regulations.
- They are made by Government Ministers within their area of responsbility, with the assistance of the Civil Service Department, under the authority of the Enabling Act.
- Prior to creating a new rule, Ministers may be required to carry out a consultation procedure with experts.
- They draft the rule and then lay it before Parliament.
- The rules and principles relating to the making of Statutory Instruments are outlined in the Statutory Instruments Act.
- Most Statutory Instruments are made under the Negative Resolution Procedure and Affirmative Resolution Procedure (NRP & ARP).
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The Uses of Statutory Instruments
Statutory Instruments have 8 uses which include:
- 1) They are often made in the form of commencement orders.
- E.g. The Railways Act.
- 2) It can be used to bring in parts of an Act into force.
- E.g. The Town and Country Planning Act, which was brought in by 75 commencement orders.
- 3) SIs are used to update the Law.
- E.g. The National Minimum Wage Act.
- 4) SIs are also used to add detail to an Act where it is considered too complex to include in the body of an Act.
- E.g. The Police and Criminal Evidence Act (PACE) gave power to the Minister to the Justice to put police codes of practise in place, in relation to the powers to stop and search, arrest and detention.
- E.g.2 Under the Seafish Conservation Act, the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, created orders relating to the conservation of sea life. This included the Undersized Spider Crabs Order.
- E.g.3 The Health and Safety at Work Act have power to the health and safety executive to make regulations relating to health and safety in the work place.
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The Uses of Statutory Instruments Part 2
- 5) SIs are also often used for their expertise.
- E.g. The Minister of Transport will make road traffice regulations.
- 6) SIs also introduce amendments to the Human Rights Act.
- under the Affirmative Resolution Prodecure.
- 7) SIs are also used to change the amount of a fine for a criminal offence.
- 8) SIs introduce and comply with EU law.
- E.g. The Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations was introduced to provide extra protection to consumers.
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