legal studies

Flashcards by hayley_jade25, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by hayley_jade25 over 7 years ago


Flashcards on legal studies, created by hayley_jade25 on 02/17/2014.

Resource summary

Question Answer
outline the structure of parliament Queens Rep- Governor General, Governor bicameral- two houses House of Representatives Senate Legislative assembly Legislative council
describe the role of the crown in the parliamentary aw making process -giving or with holding royal assent -dissolving parliament and issuing writs for new elections -officially comissions the prime minister/ premier -officially opens and closes parliamentary sessions
explain the main function of parliament the overriding function of parliament is to make laws for the peace , order and good of the country. It is not possible for the public to vote on every proposed law, so they vote in representatives to represent their values and beliefs
explain two principles of the Australian parliamentary system representative government responsible government the principles of the seperation of power
distinguish between parliament and government parliament is everyone in both lower and upper houses while government is the party or coalition with the majority of seats in the lower house
responsible governement Government is answerable and accountable to parliament and therefor the people, for its actions-it must act fairly and responsibly. This is achieved through such devices question time, debate and parliamentary committees
representative government the elected government must represent the views of the people within its electorate and act on their behalf. This is achieved through regular elections, which allow the people to vote politicians into office to represent them in parliament. If the elected members are not representing the views of the people who voted them in, they will be removed from office in the next election
role of the lower house -makes laws(most proposed laws or bills are initiated in the lower house) -seat of the government(the political party or coalition of parties that have a majority of seats in the lower house forms the government. If not one party holds the majority of seats then the parliament is known as hung and minor parties and independents have a large amount of power) -Represents the people(the lower house is known as the people's house as the members are based on the population from each state)
why is the lower house known as the people's house? the lower house is known as the peoples house because the members are based on the population from each state so this enables the parliament to reflect the views of the majority of the population. The members can represent voters with petitions and raise concerns during debates. Ministers also explain their portfolio which are government departments and therefore represent the people
role of the upper house -states house(in theory the Senates role is to protect the interests of the state, this is done by having equal representation from each state while in reality members vote along party lines) -house of review(scruntinses bills by reviewing them, usually the senate acts as a rubber stamp meaning that it simply affrims the decisions made by the lower house) -Initiation of bills(the senate can initiate bills with the exception of money bills. Bills are usually proposed in the lower house and are only initiated by the upper house if the House of reps is not sitting or a minister is in the Senate)
STATE LEVEL role of lower house -initiate bills -determine government -represent the people -scruntinises gov departments
STATE LEVEL role of upper house -house of review -initiation of bills
separation of the powers There are three main functions to be performed within a legal system to ensure the effective operation of the country. The doctrine of separation of the powers states that the three powers held by the commonwealth must be exercised by three separate bodies and kept separate so that no one body has absolute power
legislative power lies with parliament and is the power to make laws
executive powers held by the government, the power to implement and administer the laws
judical powes held by the courts, the power to enforce the law and settle legal disputes
reasons why laws may need to change -changing values in the community -technological advances -protection of the community
explain changing values of the community as a way in which laws need to change the social, moral, economic and political values of society should be reflected in the law, so when these values change so should the law so it continues to be relevant and accepted by society.
explain technological advances as a means for the law to change changes in technological advances cause constant changes in the law as new offenses or areas of the law develop. As this happens there is a need to regulate the actions of some individuals and groups in order to protect the rights of others
protection of the community as a way the law must change the legal system is designed to protect the community from harm, hence if a new harm arises or an existing harm intensifies, the law will need to change to over come this threat
VLRC-role the role of the VLRC is to research issues that the Victorian Attorney General refers it to. The law reform commission's role is to -make law reform recommendations on references -make recommendations on minor legal issues of general public concern -suggest to the AG that he or she refer a law-reform matter to the commission -educate the community on areas of law relevant to them -monitor and coordinate law reform activity in victoria
petitions a written request to parliament for action. It is accompanied by a collection of signatures that show the signatories to be concerned about the issue or problem. Petitions must be presented to parliament for them to be tabled. The must refer to a matter within the power of parliament. the more singnatures the more successful it is likely to be
demonstrations are gatherings or members of the community, held in a public place, that are designed to show their support for a change in the law. they are held to demostrate the views of the public and are much more successful when more people attend
media the media plays an important role in informing the public and members of parliament on community views in relation to issues of law reform, thereby influencing changes in the law. media coverage will often be used in conjunction with another method
evaluate petitions as a method of law reform -have the ability for both a large number, or only a few members of the public to voice their concerns. -the greater the number of signatures the greater the influence -provides the ability for all citizens to have their views tabled in parliament ALTHOUGH -can be time consuming, costly and difficult to exercise -although tabled in parliament, it is not clear the degree to which petitions influence parliament as parliament can ignore the petition and not change the law -do not contract much media attention, so awareness is not raised effectively
strengths of demonstartions -likely to gain media coverage -communicate the views of a number of people -serve an educative purpose for the rest of the community, who are made aware of the issue
weaknesses of demostartions -can be time consuming, costly and difficult to exercise -rely on the support of a large number of people to be effective -may inconvenience members of the public die to road closures ect -parliament may dismiss them as vocal minority groups and not change the law
strengths of media -reach a large audience -serves and an education function to the rest of the community -members of parliament can see the views and attuitudes of the public -can present both sides of an issue
weaknesses of media -may be biased -may highlight split views, which could work against law reform
role of the VLRC the role of VLRC is to -make law reform recommendations on matter referred to them by the attorney general - make law recommendations on minor legal matters of public concern -suggest to the attorney general that they refer a law reform issue to the commission -educate the community on matters relevant to the commissions work -monitor and coordinate law reform activity
process of the VLRC -a problem arises in the law -commission receives a reference from the AG -initial research investigation -a committee of experts is formed to offer advice and guide the commission -a consultation paper is published to outline the issues involved -consultations are held (round tables) -final report is published -AG tables report -gov decides whether to implement -parliament
CASE STUDY- PUBLIC SURVEILLANCE surveillance devices are becoming more available, affordable and sophisicated as a result the commission was asked to look at how surveillance is being used in public places
strengths of parliament members are elected into parliament by the community to represent them in law making. parliament is therefore responsible and answerable to the people parliament is able to undertake investigations into issues and gather information from a number of sources before drafting legislation provides an arena fro debate, all bills go through debate and discussion process in both houses parliament is able to create subordinate autorities to assist with law making
weaknesses of parliament -concerned with being voted out and become at the whim of the electorate. -investigations are time consuming and expensive -majority of seats in the lower house and majority seats in upper, the upper becomes a rubber stamp -gives power to undemocratic unelected bodies
first reading the long title of the bill is read by the clerk, this sets out in very broad terms the purpose or scope of the bill. Copies of the bill are distributed to members
second reading the bill is introduced and a speech is made outlining the purpose, function and broad objectives of the bill, this is called the second readings speech. In Victoria this speech begins with a statement of compatibilty, stating if it is compatible with the charter of human rights. The second reading debate then occurs, commencing with the oppositions response to the bill. This is usually the most substantial debate
consideration in deatil/ committee stage can be bipassed speaker of the lower house or the president of the upper house leaves, and is replaced by the chairman of committees. An informal discussion of the bill takes place, the bill is examined clause by clause and ammendments are made
third reading formality long title is read and there may be some debate
royal assent bill is checked and signed by the queens representative
proclaimation proclaimed in the Commonwealth of Australia Gazette
division of powers powers are divided between the state and commonwealth parliament
specific powers powers listed in the commonwealth constitution and were given to the commonwealth government
concurrent powers powers shared by the state and commonwealth parliament. powers in the constitution that have not been made exclusive to the commonwealth section 109 states that if there is a discrepancy between the governments commonwealth laws prevail
exclusive powers powers in the constitution that have been taken from the states eg section 51 gives the commonwealth power to make laws regarding currency and section 115 declares that a state cannot coin money
residual powers laws not listed in the constitution and thereby remain with the states
restrictions of the state government in law making under the constitution states can not legislate on areas of exclusive powers eg s.114 a state shall not maintain any naval or military force, s.115 a state shall not coinf money in areas of concurrent law section 109 states that if there is a discrepancy the commonwealth law pervails
restrictions of the commonwealth government in their law making powers s.116 religion s.51 acquisition of property on just terms s.99 can not favour a state over another
Show full summary Hide full summary


Basic Legal Concepts
Core Crime - legislation
Elise Jenkins
What is a Built Environment?
Cradle To Grave
Division of Law-Making Powers
KCC Yr11 Division of Law-Making Powers
Venessa Lean
Australian Parliamentary System
Legal Term 1
Pre-trial procedure
Glossary Of Terms - Built Environment
How State Powers are Preserved