Literal Rule

  • Created by: Georgie2
  • Created on: 15-04-15 10:59


LITERAL RULE: under this rule the courts will give their plain and ordinary meaning even if the result causes absurdity and not very sensible. The court will try and discover the intention of parliament which may be expressed in the words used. 

  • CASE TO USE IN OPENING PARAGRAPH: R V JUDGE OF THE CITY: 'if the words of an act are clear then you must follow them even   though they may lead to manifest absurduty. The court has nothing to do with the question whether the legislature has committed an absurdity' 

1: WHITELEY V CHAPPELL: It was an offence to impersonate 'any person entitled to vote'. D pretended to be someone whose name was on the voters list but had recently died. The court held that the defendent was not guilty since a dead person is not, in the literal meaning, 'entitled to vote'.

2: BERRIMAN: A railway worker was killed whilst doing maintenance work. His widow tried to claim compensation because there had not been a look out man…


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