Unit 1A - Statutory Interpretation

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  • Created on: 28-04-15 10:54
Define the literal rule.
Requires the judge to give a word or phrase its ordinary dictionary meaning.
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Give case examples of the literal rule.
DPP v Cheeseman, Whiteley v Chappell, Fisher v Bell, London & NE Railway v Berriman.
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Give advantages of the literal rule.
Degree of certainty - all can agree on meaning, reduces quantity of litigation, respects convention on seperation of powers.
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Give disadvantages of the literal rule.
Creates loopholes in the law, leads to injustice, undermines public confidence in the law, creates awkward precedents which require parliamentary time to correct.
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Define the golden rule.
Judge substitutes a reasonable meaning to prevent an absurd literal result which Parliament did not intended
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Give case examples of the golden rule.
R v Allen, Re Sigsworth, Adler v George.
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Give advantages of the golden rule.
Avoids absurdities and repugnant situations, ensuring fair and just results. Takes into account drafting issues and promotes justice. Saves parliamentary time - no need to redraft to correct minor errors.
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Give disadvantages of the golden rule.
Judges can add or change statutes - undermines separation of powers. Still leaves injustice where there is no absurdity.
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Define the mischief rule.
The court looks at the gap in the law Parliament tried to fill when making act, then interprets act to fill gap and to remedy the "mischief".
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Give case examples of the mischief rule.
Smith v Hughes, Royal College of Nursing v DHSS, Eastbourne BC v Sterling
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Give advantages of the mischief rule.
Flexible - avoids injustice of literal interpretation and promotes fairness. Applies spirit of Act over wording - saves time as courts apply parliamentary intention. Can be modernized to take into account recent developments.
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Give disadvantages of the mischief rule.
Gives judges a law making role infringing the separation of powers. Creates a crime after the event thus infringing the rule of law. Judges can bring their own views, sense of morality and prejudices to a case.
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Define the purposive approach.
Same as mischief rule except complies with EU law and no need to find defect or mischief in new law.
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Give case examples of the purposive approach.
Pepper v Hart, Jones v Tower Boot Co, R v Registrar General ex parte Smith
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Which rule does the purposive approach share advantages and disadvantages with?
Mischief rule BUT also complies with EU law.
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What does the ejusdem generis rule mean?
Where general words follow particular words, the general words are the same kind as the particular words.
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Give case examples of ejusdem generis.
Gregory v Fearn, Powell v Kempton Racecourse.
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Advantages of ejusdem generis.
No requirement to draft comprehensive list of everything needed, allows act to adapt to changes to society.
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Disadvantages of ejusdem generis.
Not predictable as to what judges will say is in the same category as specific words. Judicial law making undermines separation of powers.
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What does the expressio unius est exculsio alterius rule mean?
The express mention of one thing implies the exclusion of another.
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Give case examples of expressio unius est exculsio alterius.
Tempest v Kilner, Inhabitants of Sedgley.
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Advantages of expressio unius est exculsio alterius.
Outcome of cases more predictable - finite list provided. Respects separation of powers.
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Disadvantages of expressio unius est exculsio alterius.
Rigid - no adaptation to suit changing times. Can lead to unfair and unjust results.
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What does the noscitur a sociis rule mean?
A word draws its meaning from those around it.
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Give case examples of noscitur a sociis.
Muir v Keay, Inland Revenue v Frere.
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Advantages of noscitur a sociis.
No requirement to draft comprehensive list of everything needed. Saves parliamentary time.
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Disadvantages of noscitur a sociis.
Allows for judicial law making - undermines separation of powers. Judicial discretion makes cases unpredictable and risks liberties and future.
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Difference between intrinsic and extrinsic aids.
Intrinsic - present within Act. Extrinsic - found outside act.
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Advantages of internal aids?
Long title useful for indicating what court is trying to achieve. Preamble useful for mischief rule. Schedules are sometimes essential for understanding provisions of an Act. Definition sections useful if definition is different from dictionary.
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Disadvantages of internal aids?
May not shed any light on the error or ambiguity
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Advantages of external aids?
May help to discover Parliament’s intention by revealing problems with previous law. - Parliament’s intention will be more frequently followed, thus reinforcing parliamentary supremacy.
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Disadvantages of external aids?
may lead to absurd outcomes and need for Parliament to correct. Often appear several years before law passed and before a Bill enters Parliament and therefore may not reflect Parliament’s intention at time of passing the Act.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

Give case examples of the literal rule.

Back

DPP v Cheeseman, Whiteley v Chappell, Fisher v Bell, London & NE Railway v Berriman.

Card 3

Front

Give advantages of the literal rule.

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

Give disadvantages of the literal rule.

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

Define the golden rule.

Back

Preview of the front of card 5
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