There are problems with both the delegation of powers to make delegated legislation and the scrutiny of the Statutory Instruments (SIs) that arise from those powers. This report sets out some of the central problems that need to be resolved with respect to each of these two aspects of the system.
A number of case studies included in the report evidence the problems and provide practical illustrations of why reform is needed.
This report was produced in November 2021 for the public launch of our Delegated Legislation Review, to help ground our case for change. Through our Review, we aim to harness the increased awareness and dissatisfaction that now exists about SIs in order to galvanise reform.
We are conducting our Delegated Legislation Review with funding support generously provided by The Legal Education Foundation.
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Delegated legislation may not be glamorous but it is essential to how our democracy works. Time to treat it accordingly.
The launch event for our Delegated Legislation Review raised a number of challenging constitutional and practical issues to be explored further during the Review process. The vivid discussions also confirmed the existence of both heightened interest in delegated legislation and a large degree of cross-party consensus on the need for reform.
Our explanations of key terms to help you understand the delegated legislation system at Westminster and the debate about its reform
On 2 November, the Society launched its Delegated Legislation Review to an audience of MPs, Peers and constitutional experts. The event – which included two panel discussions with Members from across the political spectrum and a keynote address by Steve Baker MP – unpacked the problems with the delegated legislation system and explored avenues for reform.
The full text of the keynote address given by Steve Baker MP at the launch of the Hansard Society Delegated Legislation Review, 2 November 2021.
The Hansard Society has long argued that the system of delegated legislation is not fit for purpose. This leaflet explains our Delegated Legislation Review.