Search result: 15 articles

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Article

The Reliability of Evidence in Evidence-Based Legislation

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 1 2018
Keywords evidence-based legislation, Institutional Legislative Theory and Methodology (ILTAM), reliable evidence, Professor Robert Seidman
Authors Sean J. Kealy and Alex Forney
AbstractAuthor's information

    As evidence-based legislation develops, and as technology puts more information at our fingertips, there should be a better understanding of what exactly constitutes reliable evidence. Robert and Ann Seidman devoted their professional careers to developing the evidence-based Institutional Legislative Theory and Methodology and teaching it to legislative drafters around the world. Although ILTAM was firmly grounded in – and driven by – evidence, the question becomes what evidence is reliable and a worthy input for the methodology. Further, how can the drafter avoid the misuses of evidence such as confirmation bias and naïve beliefs? We aim to give a guide for using evidence by offering examples of evidence-based legislation in practice and through a proposed hierarchy of evidence from most to least reliable:

    1. Experiments within the jurisdiction / lessons from other jurisdictions.

    2. Information on a topic or issue that was formally requested by the legislature or produced to the legislature under oath or under the penalties of perjury.

    3. Studies / information provided by a government agency.

    4. Expert or scientific studies.

    5. Economic or mathematical models and statistics.

    6. Information provided by special interests.

    7. Stories, apocrypha and uncorroborated tales.


    We hope that this hierarchy provides a starting point for discussion to refine and improve evidence-based legislation.


Sean J. Kealy
Sean J. Kealy is a Clinical Associate Professor of Law, Director of the Legislative Clinics, Boston University School of Law. This article expands upon a concept that he first wrote about in Designing Legislation (APKN, 2011). Professor Kealy wishes to thank Professor Richard Briffault, Joseph P. Chamberlain Professor of Legislation at Columbia Law School, and Professor William W. Buzbee, Georgetown Law School, for reading and commenting on this article at the American Association of Law Schools 2017 Conference.

Alex Forney
Alex Forney earned his Juris Doctor, Boston University School of Law, 2016.
Article

Comparative Legislative Drafting

Comparing across Legal Systems

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 2 2016
Keywords comparative legislative drafting, comparative law, drafting process
Authors Constantin Stefanou
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article is an original, first attempt at establishing a list of comparative criteria for the comparative study of legislative drafting or aspects of legislative drafting between the two families of legal systems: common law and civil law. Because of the limited bibliography in the field of legislative drafting – let alone in comparative legislative drafting between common law and civil law systems – this article adds to existing scholarship on the field aiming to become a basis for further comparative research in legislative drafting. The list of criteria can be used on its own for different jurisdictions within the same family of legal systems, or the two lists can be used to juxtapose civil and common law experiences in legislative drafting. As this is the first time that such lists of comparative criteria in legislative drafting have been produced, it should be stressed that the lists are certainly not exhaustive. The aim of this article is to generate comparative research in legislative drafting, and so, inevitably, such comparative research might add or even subtract criteria from the lists depending on results.


Constantin Stefanou
Dr Constantin Stefanou is the director of the Sir William Dale Centre for Legislative Studies, at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (School of Advanced Study, University of London). He is also the convener of the oldest master’s programme in the field of legislative drafting (LLM in advanced legislative studies) at the IALS.
Article

Sir William Dale Annual Memorial Lecture

Is Legislation Literature?

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 3 2015
Authors Sir Geoffrey Bowman
Author's information

Sir Geoffrey Bowman
Sir Geoffrey was the First Parliamentary Counsel 2002-2006. He is a Bencher of Lincoln’s Inn, has an honorary LLD degree of the University of London, and is a Senior Associate Fellow of the IALS.
Article

Living in the Past

The Critics of Plain Language

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 3 2014
Keywords plain language, legal drafting, legislation, professional responsibility, legalese
Authors Derwent Coshott
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article addresses three core complaints that are frequently levelled by critics of plain legal language: (1) It will reduce reliance on lawyers; (2) It is uncertain and will lead to greater litigation; and (3) Legal writing is, and should only be, for a legally trained audience. The article develops a definition of plain language that reflects a more contemporary understanding. It demonstrates that the three core criticisms misrepresent this understanding and are unsustainable with regard to lawyers’ duty to clients, the role of legislation as public documents, and modern commercial realities.


Derwent Coshott
BA (Dist) (UNSW) JD (Syd) GradDipLegalPrac (ColLaw) LLM (Syd). PhD Candidate and Casual Lecturer at the University of Sydney.
Article

Drafting of Legislation in Compliance with Model Laws

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 4 2013
Keywords challenges, domestic legislation, model laws
Authors Lesedi Poloko
AbstractAuthor's information

    Lawmaking is an essential attribute of a state. Laws differ from one country to another, and compliance with different legal rules may create problems. Uniformity of laws is an end in itself, and its value lies in its practical benefits. Interest in the quality of legislative instruments is a major concern, especially as regards the effectiveness of the national legislation.


Lesedi Poloko
LLM in Advanced Legislative Studies (2011-2012), Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, School of Advanced Study, University of London. The author would like to thank Prof. Helen Xanthaki for her constructive comments and valuable suggestions. Any errors remain those of the author.
Article

Drafting Conventions, Templates and Legislative Precedents, and their Effects on the Drafting Process and the Drafter

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 4 2013
Keywords drafting conventions, templates, legislative precedents, drafter’s skill, necessary tools for effective communication of language of legislation
Authors Agnes Quartey Papafio
AbstractAuthor's information

    The aim of this article is to explore whether drafting conventions, templates and legislative precedents contradict or complement the drafter’s style and if they complement the drafter’s style, the various ways in which the use of these tools achieves it.


Agnes Quartey Papafio
The author received her LLM Degree from the University of London, Institute of Advanced Legal Studies in 2012. She works at the Ministry of Justice and Attorney-General’s Office in Ghana as a legislative drafter attached to the Legislative Drafting Division.
Article

The Drafter’s Role in the Drafting Process

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 3 2013
Keywords drafter, drafting process, techniques, scrutiny
Authors Mico Augustin
AbstractAuthor's information

    Every government needs legislation to cover all issues transposing obligations in the manner required by the initiator and with respect to constitutional obligations and rules that provide for the conduct of society.
    Every legislative drafter should strive to achieve a law that is people oriented. The idea is to serve by extending legislative benefits to them in the best possible manner. Drafting is not a simple transcription or translation of administrative or executive guidelines, but is the command of legislative intent. It is a mixture of vision, mission and design, which brings out a workable proposition considering the background of a problem and foreseeing the ramifications of the legislative action. Drafting always supposes precision, brevity and clarity. Drafting should be compared to a focus of technical knowledge of a special kind that put together minds to produce a unity of thought enunciated as a command.
    In order to produce quality legislation, drafters need undergraduate law training, followed by specialised postgraduate training in legislative studies, combined with hands on experience in a drafting office with an experienced senior drafter.


Mico Augustin
Legislative Drafter and Advisor of the Rwanda Parliament/Chamber of Deputies. Email: micog2009@yahoo.fr
Article

Challenges Faced by Legislative Drafters in Samoa and Other USP Member Countries

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 2-3 2012
Keywords legislative drafting challenges in Pacific Islands
Authors Mary Victoria Petelō Fa’asau
AbstractAuthor's information

    Legislative drafting is a skill slowly developing in the Pacific today. This abstract identifies and records an update on the challenges to legislative drafting in Pacific island countries. Due to lack of information on legislative drafting in the Pacific, research was undertaken with the assistance of Parliamentary Counsel and other Pacific drafters. I also attended the second biennial meeting of the Pacific Drafters’ Technical Forum in October 2009 where more current challenges were discussed. My own experiences as a legislative drafter are also reflected in this abstract.
    The outcomes of the abstract will show that whereas legislative drafting as a specialised skill is recognised by Pacific governments and interests have grown in pursuing legislative drafting as a career, the challenges faced by Pacific legislative drafters are commonly more diverse and complex. In addition to analysing some of these challenges, this paper offers some recommendations to combating them.


Mary Victoria Petelō Fa’asau
Senior Legislative Drafter, Legislative Drafting Division, Office of the Attorney-General, Samoa; 2011/2012 Greg Urwin Award recipient, Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat; Pacific Legislative Drafters’ Technical Forum; Full member of the Commonwealth Association of Legislative Counsel.
Article

Instructions to Draft Legislation

A Study on Legislative Drafting Process in Rwanda

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 2-3 2012
Keywords drafting instructions, Rwanda, quality of legislation
Authors Ruth Ikiriza
Abstract

    Drafting instructions are always difficult to discuss and evaluate because very often they depend on local traditions. Nevertheless, despite local traditions in drafting instructions their complete absence must be seen as a problem. This article tackles the issue of drafting instructions and their importance in the development of good drafts. And by good drafts the author means good quality drafts which will lead to good quality legislation. The article uses Rwanda as a case study and employs Thornton’s five stages of the drafting process as its basic methodology.


Ruth Ikiriza
Article

The Challenges of Rwandan Drafters in the Drafting Process for Good Quality Legislation

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 2-3 2012
Keywords quality of legislation, Rwanda, drafting process, drafting instructions, language and drafting, precision, clarity
Authors Alain Songa Gashabizi
Abstract

    Rwanda is a country in search a stable legal system, which includes the drafting of quality legislation. Following the events of the 1994 genocide the lack of experienced drafters and the civil law method of decentralized drafting the Rwandan legislation tends to be of bad quality mainly because of the bad quality drafts provided by the various, often unidentifiable sources of drafting. This article spells out the specific problems that the Rwandan drafter faces and offers solutions by means of a case study. The article concludes by making some specific recommendations.


Alain Songa Gashabizi
Article

Teaching Legislative Drafting

The Necessity for Clinical Legal Education

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 1 2012
Keywords clinical legal education, legislative drafting, literature review
Authors Tonye Clinton Jaja
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article makes a case for the application of clinical legal education methods in the teaching of legislative drafting. This need arises to fill the acknowledged gap namely: “the failure of legal education to provide adequate training on the legislative process, statutory interpretation and legislative drafting” considering that there are very few colleges and universities that offer legislative drafting courses. In turn this is a part of a much wider on-going problem in contemporary legal education, namely: “...clinical legal education has not been adopted by many law departments within UK universities”. Using the legislative drafting law clinic at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, University of London as a case study, this paper advocates reasons and justification(s) for the application of clinical legal education methods to facilitate the teaching of legislative drafting skills.


Tonye Clinton Jaja
PhD student, IALS, University of London. The views expressed in this article are my personal opinion and not those of the Legislative Drafting Clinic or the IALS. I accept sole responsibility for the views and errors expressed herein. The author can be contacted by e-mail: tonyeclintonjaja@yahoo.com.

Peter Butt
BA, LL B, LL M, LL D. University of Sydney, Australia. This article is a revised version of a paper delivered to the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies and the Statute Law Society, London, December 2005.

Helen Xanthaki
Senior Lecturer and Academic Director, Centre for Legislative Studies, Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, School of Advanced Study, University of London; Lawyer (Athens’ Bar).
Article

Judicial Activism

Usurpation of Parliament’s and Executive’s Legislative Functions, or a Quest for Justice and Social Transformation

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 2 2011
Keywords judicial activism, separation of powers, constitutional interpretation
Authors Reyneck Matemba
AbstractAuthor's information

    This article examines the concept of judicial activism in relation to the courts’ role of interpreting legislation, particularly focusing on the courts’ function of interpreting the Constitution. It specifically examines modes of constitutional interpretation obtaining in RSA and Nigeria, by focusing on selected judicial decisions by superior courts in the two countries. It also examines constitutional provisions governing the interpretation of the Constitution (Bill of Rights) and legislation as provided for in the Constitution of RSA and that of Nigeria. It also makes a comparative examination of judicial approaches to the interpretation of socio-economic rights enshrined in the Constitution of each of the two countries, specifically focusing on the rights to health and housing.The article observes that the concept of judicial activism is a necessary tool for attaining justice and achieving social transformation.


Reyneck Matemba
Reyneck Thokozani Matemba is a member of the Malawi Law Society and the Commonwealth Association of Legislative Counsel (CALC) and works as an Assistant Chief Legislative Counsel for the Ministry of Justice, Malawi.
Article

Sir William Dale Annual Memorial Lecture

Gender-Neutral Law Drafting: The Challenge of Translating Policy into Legislation

Journal European Journal of Law Reform, Issue 2 2011
Keywords legislation, policy, gender-neutral law drafting, New Zealand
Authors Margaret Wilson
AbstractAuthor's information

    For legislation to be inclusive it must be expressed in a way that is gender-neutral. Gender-neutral drafting became a policy issue in New Zealand in the 1980s and since that time gender-neutral drafting has become an accepted drafting practice. The issue has been to ensure previous legislation is gender-neutral. The Legislation Bill that is before the Parliament provides for legislation already enacted to be reviewed to remove gendered language. The main lesson to be learnt from the New Zealand experience is the need for political and bureaucratic commitment to gender-neutral drafting.


Margaret Wilson
Margaret Wilson is Professor of Law and Public Policy at the University of Waikato, New Zealand.
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