Chapter

United Kingdom From The Effect of Treaties in Domestic Law

Rosalyn Higgins Dbe Qc

in Themes and Theories

Published in print August 2009 | ISBN: 9780198262350
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682322 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198262350.003.0053
United Kingdom From The Effect of Treaties in Domestic Law

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In the United Kingdom, the capacity to conclude treaties is a matter of prerogative. Prerogative rights are those that are attributable alone to the Crown. The prerogative power of the Crown gives it the sole power to negotiate and enter a treaty as well as determine the content of a treaty. Ratification is also for the Crown, and will normally be delayed for twenty-one days, so that Parliament can be apprised of the intentions of the Government. A treaty has no effect in English law unless it is made part of domestic law. Although international law is part of the law of the land, treaties are not directly received into English law. When incorporation is required, it can occur in a variety of ways. The most important distinction is between those treaties that require primary legislation, and those that are brought into effect by statutory instrument under pre-existing legislative powers. A statute may be intended to give effect to a treaty and yet make no reference to it, so that the legislative intent does not appear.

Keywords: United Kingdom; prerogative; treaties; ratification; Parliament; English law; domestic law; international law; incorporation; legislation

Chapter.  8494 words. 

Subjects: Public International Law

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