Legal Question in Criminal Law in United Kingdom

Why is the task of Statutory Interpretation so important?

Asked on 11/24/16, 2:14 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

The Interpretation Act of 1978 ensures that there will clear interpretation of any statutes of the United Kingdom criminal laws based on extrinsic and intrinsic values.

The Human Rights Act of 1997 is an example of an Act that requires clear interpretation through the European Convention on Human Rights.

It is basically up to judges to interpret the legal codes that are involved in criminal law. Most judges who are also barristers/solicitors by training tend to interpret criminal law in a literal fashion. They do not tend to code switch so-to-speak in their interpretation of the law. The law as it was written is what most judges go by and this is another reason why statutory interpretation is so important. However, judges do have some leeway in terms of interpreting laws. They can potentially interpret a law that is outside a common understanding that a different judge would have about a law or laws.

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Answered on 11/24/16, 2:35 pm

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