Nicholas Nicol. Legal Aid barrister and mediator. Defending people from homelessness and discrimination. 1 Pump Court.
Nicholas Nicol. Legal Aid barrister and mediator. Defending people from homelessness and discrimination. 1 Pump Court.

English Law

The law of England and Wales is based on the judge-made common law. It is now overlaid by many statutes (Acts of Parliament) and statutory instruments (legislation which is secondary to statute but also has to be approved by Parliament).

 

However, no English lawyer is happy to rely on the bare text of a statute unless it has been interpreted by a court. Therefore, the reports of the decisions of the higher courts are as important, if not more important – interpretations of the law by the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal and the High Court are each binding on the courts at lower levels.

Decisions of the County Court are not normally reported and are only "persuasive", i.e. not binding on other County Courts.

 

You can find law reports on-line for free at Bailii (the British and Irish Legal Information Institute). There are also more comprehensive services for which you have to pay a subscription, such as Casetrack and Lawtel.

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Telephone: 0207 842 7070

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The information and any commentary on the law contained on this web-site is provided free of charge for information only. Every reasonable effort is made to make the information and commentary accurate and up-to-date but it is not intended to amount to legal advice to any person on a specific case or matter. You are strongly advised to obtain specific, personal advice from a lawyer about your case or matter and not to rely solely on the information or comments on this site.

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