Statutory legislation - Case notes

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LNER v Berrimen (1946) - Literal
Widow of a railway worker killer at work denied compensation due to interpretation of Fatal Accidents Act. The workers death did not fall within the literal meaning of "relaying or repairing". Parliament regarded this as an unfair interpretation.
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Whitley v Chappel (1868) - Literal
The D was not found guilty of the offence when he impersonated a dead person to vote. Using the literal rule a dead person was not "entitled to vote".
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Fisher v Bell (1961) - Literal
An example of an absurd result: The intention of Parliament was rendered ineffective by the literal interpretation of "offering for sale" when displaying flick knives in a window didn't fall within contract law. The D was found NG.
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Cheeseman v DPP (1990) - Literal
The defendant was accused of public indecency in a public toilet but wasn't found guilty of the offence because the officers stationed in the toilets didn't count as "passengers" or "passengers"
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R v Allen (1872) - Golden - Narrow
The words "shall marry" were interpreted with an alternative OED which gave the meaning "shall go through a marriage ceremony". This made the D guilty of bigamy.
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Alder v George (1964) - Golden - Wide
The D's broke into an Air base to protest against keeping nuclear weapons in it and were arrested inside the building. The phrase "in the vicinity" was modified to mean "within" in order to avoid absurdity. The golden rule enabled a verdict of guilty
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Re Sigsworth (1935) - Golden
An only son murdered his mother to claim the money left in her will. The Act said as the only surviving children (issue) would be entitled to this money. The word "issue" was modified so that he couldn't inherit the money because he killed his mother
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Smith v Hughes (1960) - Mischief
A prostitute was calling to men on the street from a private balcony. The D was found guilty as the key was to interpret "in a street" in relation to where the men were when solicited by the prostitute.
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DPP v Bull - Mischief
A man was charged with soliciting in a public place. The mags found him NG because a "common prostitute" did not include males.
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RCN v DHSS (1981) - Mischief
A case on widening the grounds upon legal abortions could be obtained. Nurses weren't allowed to perform abortions as they weren't "registered medical practitioners", Mischief was used to allow nurses to become medical practitioners and do abortions
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R v Registrar General - Ex parte Smith (1990) Purposive
Smith who was criminally insane and killed twice had been adopted as a baby. It was his right to have his birth certificates but he was not given them as he could have harmed his birth mother.
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Jones v Tower Boot Co - Purposive
Jones sued his employer after experiencing racial discrimination during his lunch hour, they refused to compensate him as he wasn't actually working when it happened. The company was found liable after the case.
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Pickstone v Freemans plc (1998) - Purposive
D was accused of paying female staff less money for doing the same job as their male co-workers. The purposive approach was used and Miss Pickstone was entitled to claim on the basis of work and equal value.
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R v Secretary of State for Health ex part Quintavalle (2003) - Purposive
Parliaments aim was to make it legal for
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

The D was not found guilty of the offence when he impersonated a dead person to vote. Using the literal rule a dead person was not "entitled to vote".

Back

Whitley v Chappel (1868) - Literal

Card 3

Front

An example of an absurd result: The intention of Parliament was rendered ineffective by the literal interpretation of "offering for sale" when displaying flick knives in a window didn't fall within contract law. The D was found NG.

Back

Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4

Front

The defendant was accused of public indecency in a public toilet but wasn't found guilty of the offence because the officers stationed in the toilets didn't count as "passengers" or "passengers"

Back

Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5

Front

The words "shall marry" were interpreted with an alternative OED which gave the meaning "shall go through a marriage ceremony". This made the D guilty of bigamy.

Back

Preview of the back of card 5
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Comments

Smith E

The key cases are all here, and the principles of interpretation are explained through the specific facts in each, which is impressive. 

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