Irish Law

Topics: Law, Common law, Criminal law Pages: 5 (1484 words) Published: April 30, 2012
1. Outline the sources of Irish Law
* History sources of law
* Common Law
* Equity
Example of the many maxims:
i. Those who seek equity must do equity.
ii. Equity looks the intent rather than the form.
iii. Those who come to equity must come with clean hands. iv. Equality is equity.
* Legal sources of Law:
There are five legal sources:
a. Legislation (Statute Law)
b. Subordinate Legislation
c. The Irish Constitution 1937 (Bunreacht na hÉireann)
d. European Union Law
e. Judicial Precedent (Interpretation of Statutes)

2. Give a brief explanation on each source.
* History sources of Law
It is a generally regarded as common law and equity.

* Common Law
Common law (also known as case law or precedent) is law developed by judges through decisions of courts and similar tribunals rather than through legislative statutes or executive branch action.

* Equity
Generally, the court began to be guided by its previous decisions and formulated a number of general principles, known as the 'Maxims of Equity', upon which it would proceed. These are still applied today when equitable relief is claimed. * Example of the many maxims:

a. Those who seek equity must do equity.
Persons who seek equitable relief must be prepare to act fairly towards their opponents as a condition of obtaining relief. b. Equity looks the intent rather than the form.
Although a person may pretend that they are doing something in the correct form, equity will look to see what they really trying to achieve. c. Those who come to equity must come with clean hands.

To be fairly treated, the plaintiff must have acted properly in past dealings with the defendant. d. Equality is equity.
What is available to one person must be available to another. This reflects the effort made by the law to play fair and redress the balance.

* Legal sources of Law
It is the means by which the law is currently brought into existence. There are five legal sources:
* Legislation (Statute Law)
Legislation is the laying down of legal rules by an institution which is recognized as having the right to make law for the community. Such laws are known as statutes. Case: Burke V. Aer Lingus (1997)

* Subordinate Legislation
Subordinate, or ‘delegated’, legislation arises from laws laid down by a body or a person to whom the Oireachtas. I.e. The superior legislature, has delegated power to make such laws. The Oireachtas has delegated power to government ministers, local authorities and bodies to legislate for specified purposes only. * The Irish Constitution 1937 (Bunreacht na hÉireann)

The Constitution, which came into effect on 29 December 1937, is the basis of our law. The law of the Constitution: a) Regulates the structure and function of the principal organs of government. b) Regulates the relationship of these organs to each other and to do the citizen. Case: Murphy V. Attorney General (1980)

* European Union Law
Since accession of Ireland to the European Economic Community in January 1973, the Constitution has no longer been supreme in all respects. A constitutional amendment was necessary to allow laws of the Community made externally, and not by organs established under the Constitution, to be part of our domestic law. Case: Kenny V. Trinity College and Dublin City Council (2007) * Judicial Precedent (Interpretation of Statutes)

Common law and equity have been developed through the centuries by judges in giving their decisions in the courts. Judge-made law involved the application of customary law to new situations, thereby maintaining consistency. As the law because more sophisticated, the decisions of the judges were recorded and reports were made of law cases. It became possible to follow previous decisions of judges and this brought about a level of certainty and progressive development in judge-made law. The reform introduced by the...
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