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Plurality of Law in the United Kingdom - Essay Example

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This paper argues that the introduction of a plurality of laws in the United Kingdom is only made possible by the doctrine of parliamentary sovereignty. The essay discusses parliamentary sovereignty in the UK and the issue of co-existing with the European Community law…
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Plurality of Law in the United Kingdom
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"Plurality of Law in the United Kingdom"

Download file to see previous pages Both of these concepts of UK Parliamentary sovereignty are compromised by the UK’s accession to the EC.1 This fact together with the UK’s accession to international treaties and conventions and the application of common law ultimately means that the UK constitution is subject to two underlying and conflicting principles. These two conflicting principles are Parliamentary sovereignty and a plurality of sources of law in the UK. There is a concern and perhaps some measure of optimism that the plurality of sources of applicable law in the UK will eventually limit, if not eliminate the concept of Parliamentary sovereignty and that this would be progressive development.
This paper argues, however, that the introduction of a plurality of laws in the UK is only made possible by the doctrine of parliamentary sovereignty. Just as parliamentary sovereignty permitted the introduction of a plurality of sources of law it can just as easily reverse this application of a plurality of sources of law. Therefore, while a plurality of sources of applicable laws might challenge the concept of parliamentary sovereignty in practice, theoretically, parliamentary sovereignty continues to provide for a reversal of this approach.
A.V. Dicey’s description of the constitutional rule of law envisioned by the UK’s concept of Parliamentary sovereignty puts the strength and endurance of UK Parliamentary sovereignty in its proper perspective. Dicey maintains that the UK’s constitution is built around three significant principles. First, the rule of law renders the government accountable to the public. Secondly, the public is also accountable to the rule of law. Thirdly, the constitution sets out the framework by which the judiciary are made accountable for the administration of law.2 In describing the UK constitution, Dicey goes further to state that this constitutional framework is made possible by the fact that Parliament enjoys “total power”, and this is a basis of parliamentary sovereignty. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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