Supreme Court

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Why was the Supreme Court built in 2010 and how effective has it been at upholding civil liberties?

The Supreme Court was introduced in 2010 as a replacement for the House of Lords as the top law court of justice in the UK, Wales and Northern Ireland. This court has cost approximately 59 million pounds to build and was officially open on 1st October 2009. The enactment of the Supreme Court came about under the Constitutional Reform Act 2005 (The Supreme Court [Online], 2010) and currently stands as the chief justice in the UK. The main focus of this essay is to examine how The Supreme Court prioritises in the development of the United Kingdom Law thus playing an important task at maintaining fundamental individual rights. Being the most prominent judiciary in the UK, it is also vital to see the difference between The Supreme Court and the previous House of Lords Committee in which The Supreme Court has replaced. The major differences are visible in terms of power and the impact it has on the British Constitution.

The main reason The Supreme Court was built is due to the Government’s decision on separating the judicial making functions and the legislative duty of the House of Lords, making this the last step in separation of powers. (Lord Philip, 2009) stated that it has come to a situation where the adjudicator are absolutely separated from the Legislature and Parliament. (Raynsford, 2010) claimed that it was right for the Prime Minister, prior consultation from the Parliament, to relocate the Ultimate Court of Appeal (The Supreme Court) from the House of Lords as to avoid confusion between the role of the House of Lords and the role of the Court of Appeal. In addition, this separation of power avoids the judiciary from holding absolute power, thus discouraging corruption and bias from the judiciary through politics and media.

(Casciani, 2010) stated that after the running of the Supreme Court, 12 Law chancellor from the House of Lords who were hearing appeals in the Parliament is now the Justices of the Supreme Court and are no more partaking in the House of Lord’s affair. Before the enactment of the Supreme Court, senior judges that are currently in the House of Lords were enlightened to apprehend cases that are of great significant to the public and constitution inside the House of Lords itself (The Supreme Court [Online], 2010). They were eligible to vote for the outcome of the cases and sometimes, if any, would have a major relation to personal political interest. However, with a new key reform in place, Parliament will be responsible for making law on favour of the electorate whilst the judges from the Supreme Court focus on the fairness of the new law when applied to cases (BBC News, 2010).

(Lord Falconer, 2009) suggested that this new reform would strengthen the judiciary, making it possible for the judiciary to go against the executive’s decisions (Prime Minister and his Cabinet) Moreover, a leading judge has told BBC that Britain’s Supreme Court could be more authoritative than the House of Lords department and Lord Neuberger anticipate that the new court of appeal could hold more power than the government (Rozenberg, 2009). It is believed that the judgment of the justices from the Supreme Court will affect the decisions in the lower courts which, in this case, apply to all the courts in the UK (BBC News, 2010). The Supreme Court also emphasise on corruption issues involving governing authorities in Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland, making sure that they abide and commit within the powers granted to them or whether they successfully complete the duty given to the authoritative government in each state.

Lord Neuberger argued that there is a real danger that judges will seize more power than what they currently have (Rozenberg, 2009). Therefore, it is likely that the Supreme Court operates the way the United State’s Supreme Court functions which, upon the Court’s decisions, bind every local...
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