Human Rights Act 1998 ( Hra )

3755 Words16 Pages
Section C: 8
Before the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA) coming into force, the UK subscribed to a ‘weak’ judicial review. However, the Act has brought a drastic change into the practice of judicial review in the UK. In this essay, I shall argue that with the new powers conferred to the courts under sections 3 and 4 (ss 3 and 4) of the HRA, they have developed a mechanism which allows the court to communicate with Parliament through their interpretations although the practice of judicial review remains relatively ‘weak’. I shall also argue that the courts should continue the adoption of the new approach to judicial review in the UK to counterbalance and limit the possibility of State violations of fundamental human rights of individuals whilst still keeping the principle of parliamentary sovereignty intact.
A weak judicial review is a creation of statute (i.e. the HRA) that reviews the legitimacy of executive powers to ensure the Government acts within the scope of power Parliament has conferred to them. Compared to a ‘strong’ judicial review, the UK courts have neither the power to strike down a primary legislation nor can they review legislation decisions. A weakness of ‘strong’ judicial review is that it would undermine the principles of separation of powers and parliamentary sovereignty that underpin the UK Constitution as it would allow the courts to put legal constraints on Parliament. Therefore, the judiciary should respect the Parliament’s decisions and remain the
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