How Laws Are Made and Classified

Topics: Law, Human rights, United Kingdom Pages: 3 (816 words) Published: October 14, 2011
This assignment will demonstrate how laws are made and the number of ways in which laws are classified.

Goodey et al. (2008 p.6) states that ‘law can be defined as a set of rules created by the state which forms a framework to ensure a peaceful society. If the rules are broken they can be enforced by mechanisms created by the state and sanctions imposed.’ Law is made through constitutions that give people rights but also imposes responsibilities. An example of this is the legal case of Miller v Jackson 1977 QB 966. Although the UK’s constitution is unwritten, they can be found in different sources such as Acts of Parliament, Common law and Europe.

The UK Parliament is the highest source of law because it has the right to make any law it chooses and nobody can override that law. The UK Parliament is made up of two houses; House of Lords which is the highest court in the UK and House of Commons where members are democratically elected, therefore taking priority over the House of Lords. The UK Parliament can give power to public bodies to make laws. This is known as subordinate legislation. All Parliamentary Acts start as a bill which is a proposal for a piece of legislation. An example of this is the Abortion Act 1967. The three main types of bills are; Public bills, Private Members’ bills and Private bills. Although Acts of Parliament are thoroughly discussed and written by experts, there are times when the wording is not clear. In situations like this the courts have to provide a definition by determining Parliament’s intentions and put them into practice.

There are two different European sources of law; European Union (EU) and European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). Areas covered by EU law are regarded as supreme and the UK Parliament cannot pass a law that conflicts with EU law. EU law covers matters of trade and freedom of movement of workers. The formation of EU resulted in the making of rights and responsibilities in areas like;...
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