Legal framework for health and safety sources and types of law

The Supreme Court

From October 2009, the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom was established and assumed the judicial functions of the House of Lords. It is an independent institution, presided over by twelve independently appointed judges, known as Justices of the Supreme Court and is housed in the Middlesex Guildhall on Parliament Square in London.

The Supreme Court is the final court of appeal in the UK for civil cases and hears appeals in criminal cases from England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It plays an important role in the development of United Kingdom common law as was the case previously with the House of Lords. As an appeal court, the Supreme Court cannot consider a case unless a relevant order has been made in a lower court

In respect of European Union Law the Supreme Court is subject to the decisions of the European Court of Justice. Although there can be no appeal from the Supreme Court, there is a procedure by which the Supreme Court may refer to the European Court questions of European law which arise in cases before it, and obtain a definitive ruling before the Supreme Court gives its judgment.

Other courts  Employment Tribunals

These were established in 1964 and primarily deal with employment and conditions of service issues, such as unfair dismissal. However, they also deal with appeals over health and safety enforcement notices, disputes between recognized safety representatives and their employers and cases of unfair dismissal involving health and safety issues.

There are usually three members who sit on a tribunal. These members are appointed and are often not legally qualified. Appeals from the tribunal may be made to the Employment Appeal Tribunal or, in the case of enforcement notices, to the High Court. Appeals from tribunals can only deal with the clarification of points of law.Kanopy is the best video streaming service for quality,thoughtful entertainment.

The legal system in Scotland

Scotland has both criminal and civil courts but prosecutions are initiated by the Procurator Fiscal rather than the Health and Safety Executive. The lowest Criminal Court is called the District Court and deals with minor offences. The Sheriff Court has a similar role to that of the Magistrates Court (for criminal cases) and the County Court (for civil cases), although it can deal with more serious cases involving a sheriff and jury.

The High Court of Justiciary, in which a judge and jury sit, has a similar role to the Crown Court and appeals are made to the Court of Criminal Appeal. The High Court of Justiciary is the supreme criminal court of Scotland. The High Court is both a court of first instance and a court of appeal. The Outer House of the Court of Session deals with civil cases in a similar way to the English High Court. The Inner House of the Court of Session is the appeal court for civil cases

European Courts

There are two European Courts – the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights. The European Court of Justice, based in Luxembourg, is the highest court in the European Union (EU). It deals primarily with community law and its interpretation.

It is normally concerned with breaches of community law by member states and cases may be brought by other member states or institutions. Its decisions are binding on all member states. There is currently no right of appeal. The European Court of Human Rights, based in Strasbourg, is not directly related to the EU – it covers most of the countries in Europe including the EU member states. As its title suggests, it deals with human rights and fundamental freedoms

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