Programmes of Law Reform | Northern Ireland Law Commission
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Programmes of Law Reform

Second Programme of Law Reform

The Commission’s Second Programme of Law Reform.

The Second Programme consists of the following projects:

  • The Bail in Criminal Proceedings Project.
  • The Law of Multi-unit Developments (Apartments).
  • The Regulation of Health Care Professionals in Northern Ireland (as a joint project with the Law Commission (England & Wales) and Scottish Law Commission).
  • Aspects of Landlord and Tenant Law.
  • The Unfitness of an Accused Person to Plead.
  • The Availability and Scope of the Defence of Insanity to an Accused Person.
  • The Initiation of Criminal Prosecutions.
  • Electoral Law (as a joint project with the Law Commission (England & Wales) and the Scottish Law Commission).
  • Reform of Defamation Law. (Reference from the Department of Finance and Personnel)

The Commission’s proposals to the Minster for Justice regarding the contents of its Second Programme of Law Reform were the product of a public consultation exercise initiated in August 2010. This generated twenty proposals for new law reform projects. The respondents included individuals, public bodies, the voluntary sector and lawyers. The responses entailed fourteen new law reform proposals and the resubmission of certain proposals previously considered for inclusion in the First Programme, but rejected. All proposals were duly considered with care by the Commission, applying its project selection criteria. This exercise also gave effect to the relevant Equality Commission Guidelines.

An up-to-date account of each project may be found under ‘Current Projects’.

Related documents
On the 9 August 2010 the Commission published a consultation paper in respect of proposals for its Second Programme of Law Reform. The Commission was pleased to receive 26 responses from a variety of sources including individuals, law firms, public bodies and the voluntary sector. In all, 14 new law reform proposals were submitted for consideration by the Commission - as several respondents had made submissions in respect of the same area.

The Commission's First Programme of Law Reform was approved by the Secretary of State on 17th October 2009 and laid before the Houses of Parliament and the Northern Ireland Assembly under section 52(2) and 52(3) of The Justice (Northern Ireland) Act 2002. The First Programme of law reform ran from 1 June 2009 to 31 March 2011.