First Report of Session 2014-15 - Statutory Instruments Joint Committee Contents


Instruments reported



At its meeting on 11 June 2014 the Committee scrutinised a number of Instruments in accordance with Standing Orders. It was agreed that the special attention of both Houses should be drawn to six of those considered. The Instruments and the grounds for reporting them are given below. The relevant Departmental memoranda are published as appendices to this report.

1 S.I. 2014/421: Reported for requiring elucidation and defective drafting

Certification of Enforcement Agents Regulations 2014 (S.I. 2014/421)


1.1 The Committee draws the special attention of both Houses to these Regulations on the grounds that they require elucidation in one respect and that they are defectively drafted in one respect.

1.2 The Regulations make provision about certificates for enforcement agents under sections 63 and 64 of the Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007.

1.3 Regulation 2 defines the "court" as "the County Court". Since section 17(1) of the Crime and Courts Act 2013, which introduces section A1 of the County Courts Act 1984 establishing the single County Court, was not commenced when the Regulations came into force, the Committee asked the Ministry of Justice to explain the intended operation of the definition of "court" and, in particular, whether it is intended that each county court should maintain a separate list of certificated persons under regulation 4 pending the commencement of the single County Court. In a memorandum printed at Appendix 1, the Department explains that the intention was to maintain a single list, both before and after the establishment of the single County Court; and that the intention of having a single list was achieved by requiring applications for certificates to be made to the County Court Business Centre; that requirement is contained in rule 84.18 of the Civil Procedure Rules 1998 as inserted by the Civil Procedure (Amendment No. 2) Rules 2014 (S.I. 2014/482). The Department adds that the definition (which it now considers unnecessary) could have been made clearer by adding something transitional to it, and agrees that the Explanatory Note could have made the position clearer. The Committee is not convinced that the definition was necessarily superfluous, the term defined not being identical with the language of the enabling provision, but agrees with the Department about the effect of S.I. 2014/482. Accordingly the Committee reports regulations 2 and 4 as requiring the elucidation provided by the Department's memorandum as amplified above.

1.4 Regulation 4 makes provision for applications to the court for the issue of certificates. Paragraph (5)(c) requires notices of any application to state "the date on which the application will be heard, which must be at least eight days after [a specified time limit for providing reasons opposing the issue of the certificate to the applicant] …". Regulation 5 provides: "No application for a certificate to be issued will be heard before the date in regulation 4(5)(c)". The Committee asked the Department whether regulation 5 is intended to have legislative effect, and if so what. In its memorandum the Department explains that "regulation 5 was included to reinforce the requirement in regulation 5(4)(c) (presumably a misprint for 4(5)(c)) that there be at least eight days between the end of the period in which reasons may be submitted why the applicant may not be a fit and proper person to be granted a certificate and the date of the hearing of the application itself"; it acknowledges, however, "that the legislative effect of requiring the eight-day interval is achieved by regulation 4(5)(c) itself, and that regulation 5 … does not add any legislative effect and may be seen as "inert" (to use the description in the Committee's First Special Report of 2013-14)." For the reasons given in that Report, to which the Department correctly refers, the Committee considers it undesirable to include provisions which while appearing to contain legislative propositions are in fact designed merely for emphasis. Accordingly the Committee reports regulation 5 for defective drafting, acknowledged in principle by the Department.

2 S.I. 2014/424 and 512: Reported for defective drafting

Teachers' Pensions (Amendment) Regulations 2014 (S.I. 2014/424)  



Teachers' Pension Scheme Regulations 2014 (S.I. 2014/512)


2.1 The Committee draws the special attention of both Houses to these Regulations on the ground that each is defectively drafted in one identical respect; and the Committee draws the special attention of both Houses to S.I. 2014/512 on the ground that it is also defectively drafted in one other respect.

2.2 The Teachers' Pensions (Amendment) Regulations 2014 (S.I. 2014/424) amend the Teachers' Pensions Regulations 2010 to give effect to the new "Fair Deal" issued by HM Treasury in October 2013 and to extend access to the teachers' pension scheme for teachers, on the same terms as other members, who have moved from the public sector to an independent contractor by way of a compulsory transfer.

2.3 The Teachers' Pension Scheme Regulations 2014 (S.I. 2014/512) establish a career average re-valued earnings scheme for the payment of pensions and other benefits to and in respect of teachers in England and Wales.

2.4 Regulation 5 of S.I. 2014/424 inserts a new regulation 14A into the 2010 Regulations setting the test for a person ("P") to become an "accepted member"; paragraph 5 of Schedule 1 to S.I. 2014/512 sets a test in similar terms. In each case P becomes one "if the conditions in [tests] (2) to (4) are met?. Each provision ends with the proposition that "P ceases to be an accepted member from the date P ceases to satisfy" the tests set out earlier in the provision. Since those tests appeared to relate to historic features of the employee's employment, the Committee asked the Department for Education how a person can be said to cease to satisfy them. In a memorandum printed at Appendix 2, the Department acknowledges that this amounts to a drafting error, and explains that the policy intention is that a person ceases to be an accepted member from the date that the person no longer undertakes employment referred to in one of those tests. The Department thanks the Committee for pointing out the error and undertakes to amend the relevant provisions at the earliest convenient opportunity, expected to be in the autumn of 2014. The Committee accordingly reports regulation 5 of S.I. 2014/424 and paragraph 5 of Schedule 1 to S.I. 2014/512 for defective drafting, acknowledged by the Department.

2.5 Regulation 220 of S.I. 2014/512 deals with the provision of information to scheme managers. The Regulation is said to apply to "(a) a person (P) who is or was in pensionable service; and (b) P's personal representatives" (para.(1)). Paragraph (2), however, imposes the disclosure obligation on P alone. The Committee asked the Department why the obligation in paragraph (2) does not include express reference to personal representatives, as does paragraph (1). In its memorandum the Department acknowledges that the absence of a reference to P's personal representatives in paragraph (2) is an unintentional omission, thanks the Committee for pointing it out and undertakes to amend the provision at the earliest convenient opportunity, expected to be in the autumn of 2014. The Committee accordingly reports regulation 220 of S.I. 2014/512 for defective drafting, acknowledged by the Department.

3 S.I. 2014/531: Reported for doubtful vires

Government Resources and Accounts Act 2000 (Estimates and Accounts) Order 2014 (S.I. 2014/531)


3.1 The Committee draws the special attention of both Houses to this Order on the ground that there is doubt as to whether it is intra vires in one respect.

3.2 The Government Resources and Accounts Act 2000 empowers the Treasury to make orders to designate identified bodies in relation to named government departments, and this Order has effect for the current financial year, which ends on 31 March 2015. Designation of any specific body in relation to a department has the effect that the estimate for the department for approval by the House of Commons in respect of the current financial year must, if the Treasury so directs, include information relating to resources expected to be used by that body, and that the department's accounts have to cover the resources used by that body in the year. The Committee observed that a number of the entities designated by the Order did not appear to be bodies, despite the fact that Article 2 provides for the designation of specified "bodies" (that being the scope of the enabling power - section 4A(3) and (4) of the 2000 Act). The Committee asked HM Treasury to explain how the Certification Officer, the Director of Fair Access to Higher Education and the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman, each of which appear to be individuals and none of which is a corporation sole, can count as 'a body' for the purposes of designation - as opposed to the organisation that each of them heads.

3.3 In a memorandum printed at Appendix3, the Department explains the nature of the appointment of each of these three officials and identifies, in particular, the powers under which they appoint staff. The Department agrees that none of these officials is a corporation sole but asserts that "it is clear that the description of each denotes an office and that persons appointed to one of the offices are officeholders. Further, in each case the functions in question are conferred on and exercised by or on behalf of the officeholder, the expenditure in question is incurred by or on behalf of the officeholder, and (as appropriate to the scope and nature of its activities) each officeholder is required to account for its exercise of and expenditure on its functions". The Department further argues that "there is power … to designate the offices in question, where the reference to the office is, in effect, a reference to the organisation that carries out the relevant functions (and hence a "body" in the relevant sense)" and that "it would be artificial to frame such designations by reference to some description of a wider organisation when that organisation is a means of delivering the functions conferred on the office". Its view is that "a designation in those terms would in substance be no different from designating the office by name."

3.4 The Committee agrees with the Department's statement that "the description of each denotes an office and that persons appointed to one of the offices are officeholders". But the Committee does not accept that this necessarily makes the officeholders "bodies", and the fact that they have power to appoint staff does not alone turn the officeholder and his or her staff into a "body" for statutory purposes. The ability to designate the officeholders by name would of course have been beyond doubt had the enabling power used the common term "person", which by virtue of the Interpretation Act 1978 would have been capable of referring either to the officeholder alone or to the officeholder together with his or her staff (as an unincorporated body of persons). However, while the power survives in its present form, secure compliance calls for designation of entities that clearly count as "bodies" - a course that, in the case of the three designations queried, could have been achieved without significant difficulty. While the Committee accepts that enabling powers can at times be respected securely without identical terminology, the difficulty here is that the difference lies not just in terminology but also in concept.

3.5 The regime under consideration relates to the material that departments must prepare for Parliament rather than transactions, and accordingly the Committee cannot envisage any transaction that could be invalidated by the flaws identified by it. Furthermore, it cannot see anything in the 2000 Act that prevents the Department's intention being achieved as a voluntary arrangement, given suitable co-operation. At the same time, given the need for legality and regularity in the provision of such material, the Committee sees no reason to depart in this case from its practice of drawing attention to delegated legislation that does not clearly confine itself to what the enabling power authorises.

3.6 Accordingly the Committee reports the Order on the ground that there appears to be doubt whether it is intra vires in respect of the designations specified above.

4 Draft S.I.: Reported for doubtful vires and unexpected use of the enabling power

Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (Amendment of Schedule 1) Order 2014 (Draft S.I.)


4.1 The Committee draws the special attention of both Houses to this draft Order on the grounds that, if it is approved and made, there will be a doubt whether it is intra vires, and that it would in any event make an unexpected use of the power conferred by the enabling Act.

4.2 Article 2 of the draft Order would insert a new paragraph 19 in Part 2 of Schedule 1 to the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 ("the 2012 Act") so as to introduce a new residence test for individuals applying for legal aid. In general terms, the new test would require an individual to be lawfully resident in the United Kingdom at the time of applying for civil legal services, and to have been lawfully resident in the United Kingdom for at least 12 months in the past. Certain categories of person would be exempt from the test, for example asylum seekers and members of the armed forces. Article 3 provides that the test would not apply in relation to certain types of legal services, for example those concerning the care, supervision and protection of children.

4.3 The enabling provisions relied on by the Lord Chancellor for the proposed new paragraph 19 are sections 9(2)(b) and 41(2)(b) of the 2012 Act. These provide:

Section 9

(1)  Civil legal services are to be available to an individual under this Part if—

(a)  they are civil legal services described in Part 1 of Schedule 1, and

(b)  the Director [of Legal Aid Casework] has determined that the individual qualifies for the services in accordance with this Part (and has not withdrawn the determination).

(2)  The Lord Chancellor may by order—

(a)  add services to Part 1 of Schedule 1, or

(b)  vary or omit services described in that Part,

(whether by modifying that Part or Part 2, 3 or 4 of the Schedule).

Section 41

(2)  [Orders under this Part] may, in particular, make provision by reference to—

(a)…

(b) services provided for a particular class of individual …

4.4 The Committee asked the Ministry of Justice to explain—

(a)  why it is considered that sections 9(2) and 41(2) authorise the proposed paragraph 19, having regard in particular to the absence of explicit provision for the imposition of a residence condition which would arguably impede the right of access to court, and to the principle that a power to vary an Act of Parliament by delegated legislation is given a narrow and strict construction and any doubts about the power's scope are resolved by a restrictive approach (see R v Secretary of State for the Environment ex parte Spath Holme Ltd [2001] 2 AC 349);

(b)  in what way the Order is considered to vary or omit a "service"; and

(c)  what indication was given to Parliament that the power conferred by section 9(2) would be exercised in the way now being contemplated.

4.5 In a memorandum printed at Appendix 4, the Ministry of Justice asserts that the statutory language of the 2012 Act clearly permits the introduction of a residence test, even on a narrow and strict construction. This is particularly because section 41(2)(b) allows for orders under Part 1 of the Act to make provision by reference to services provided for a particular class of individual. While the Ministry of Justice acknowledges that there is no express reference in section 9 or 41 to make provision which applies generally to a range of services described in Part 1 of Schedule 1, it does not consider that the absence of such a reference detracts from what it describes as "this clear interpretation"; its view is that the power exists by necessary implication. The memorandum also emphasises that the proposed residence test would not impede access to justice, and points out that access to justice and access to taxpayer-funded legal aid are distinct concepts.

4.6 The Committee does not find these arguments persuasive. It is also aware that judicial review proceedings have been brought in relation to the proposed residence test which were heard in the Administrative Court on 3-4 April 2014, and that judgment is awaited.

4.7 The effect of the draft Order is succinctly described in the explanatory note as "a new general exclusion for civil legal services provided to individuals who do not satisfy the residence test". In the Committee's view, it is far from clear that an order-making power enabling the Lord Chancellor to vary or omit services described in Part 1 of Schedule 1 permits him to create a new general exclusion of the type proposed. If Parliament had intended that the Lord Chancellor could introduce such an exclusion by secondary legislation, the Committee considers it likely that it would have conferred an express power enabling him to do so, analogous to that contained in section 175 of the National Health Service Act 2006 (which allows the Secretary of State to provide by regulations for persons not ordinarily resident in Great Britain to be charged for NHS services).

4.8 The Committee accepts that the order-making power in section 9(2) of the 2012 Act has to be read with section 41(2)(b), and would enable the Lord Chancellor to expand or contract existing classes of individuals who are eligible for civil legal services under Part 1 of Schedule 1 by reference to the kind of service they are seeking. For example, paragraph 7 of the Schedule makes legal aid available in relation to grants under Part 1 of the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 for the provision of facilities to "disabled persons" within the meaning of section 100 of that Act. This is a service provided for a class of individuals, namely disabled persons as defined in section 100; and there is a close nexus between that class and the service which individuals in that class may wish to seek, i.e. legal advice in relation to claims for housing grants to improve the accessibility of their home. While section 9(2) of the 2012 Act, read with section 41(2)(b), may allow the Lord Chancellor to narrow that class by, for example, redefining the term "disabled person", the Committee considers there to be real doubt whether those powers permit him to narrow the class by reference to a wholly extraneous factor, namely the disabled person's immigration status.

4.9 In considering the extent of the Lord Chancellor's power to amend Part 2 of Schedule 1 to the 2012 Act, the Committee would expect a Court to apply the principle of construction by which words having a literally wide meaning (when taken in isolation) are treated as reduced in scope by the verbal context. In the case of this draft Order, the context is the current paragraphs of Part 2. These set out a number of civil legal services that fall outside Part 1 by reference to descriptions of types of claim that a person might wish to bring, for example civil legal services provided in relation to personal injury or death (paragraph 1), civil legal services provided in relation to the making of wills (paragraph 10), and civil legal services provided in relation to judicial review of an enactment, decision, act or omission (paragraph 18). The proposed new paragraph 19 is significantly different in character to any existing provision in Part 2 in that it would exclude individuals from access to the types of services listed in Part 1 by reference to a condition of general application rather than one linked to a type of claim that they may wish to bring. The Committee doubts whether sections 9(2) and 41(2)(b) of the 2012 Act enable the Lord Chancellor to insert in Part 2 a provision such as paragraph 19 which is wholly unlike the existing contents of that Part.

4.10 The Committee therefore reports article 2 of the draft Order on the ground that there appears to be doubt as to whether it would be intra vires.

4.11 In paragraph 9 of its memorandum, the Ministry of Justice accepts that (so far as it is aware) no indication was given to Parliament during the passage of the Bill which became the 2012 Act that the power conferred by section 9(2) could be used to introduce a residence test for civil legal aid. However the Ministry considers that the draft Order is nonetheless consistent with Parliament's intention and not contrary to any indication given to Parliament as to how the power would be used. The annex to its memorandum sets out the relevant material identified by the Ministry of Justice in the legislative history of what is now section 9(2) of the 2012 Act.

4.12 In the Committee's view, the key material is as follows:

(a)  The House of Lords Delegated Powers and Regulatory Reform Committee's 21st Report of the 2010-12 session. This drew clause 8(2) (which became section 9(2) of the Act) to the attention of the House on the ground that the power was not limited to routine updating and may legitimately be used to make substantial omissions from Schedule 1.

(b)  The Government's response in December 2011 (published as Appendix 2 to that Committee's 22nd Report) stating that clause 8(2) would be "a focussed power to omit services where, for example, funding may no longer be necessary and it will allow whole or parts of paragraphs to be omitted".

(c)  The statement by the Minister (Jonathan Djanogly M.P.) at Commons Committee stage on 6 September 2011 (Public Bill Committee, Bill 205, col 326) that the power "allows the removal of civil legal services where it is no longer appropriate to fund them. An example of where that might be necessary is where the governing legislation behind an area of law is repealed or otherwise altered, and we need to alter civil legal aid provision accordingly".

(d)  The statement by the Minister (Lord McNally) at Lords Report stage on 5 March 2012 (Official Report, vol. 735, col. 1157) that "the principles underpinning this Bill include the need to establish very clearly the scope of civil legal aid services".

(e)  The following statements by Lord McNally at Lords Third Reading on 27 March 2012 (Official Report, vol. 736, col. 1253) when moving an amendment to clause 9(2):

"The power to vary a service allows us to amend the existing services within the schedule where they need to be altered, but without the need to omit a service and then add a new service. For example, if the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2006 were amended in the future, any such amendment might not mean that services need to be added to the schedule, but it might be necessary to vary the provisions in paragraph 31 of Part 1 in order to reflect any such changes to those regulations.

The provisions of Amendment 1 mean that the power in clause 9(2) would be similar to that which exists in Section 6(7) of the Access to Justice Act 1999. We consider that this is the correct and sensible approach to take...

Amendment 2, tabled by the noble Lord, Lord Bach, would allow services to be added but not to be omitted. As I have said, the government amendment provides for balance to the existing clause 9. Amendment 2 seeks to go further and actually removes the ability to omit. I firmly believe that that power to omit is necessary and gives the Bill a welcome flexibility. An example of where this may be necessary is where the governing legislation behind an area of law is repealed or otherwise altered and we need to alter civil legal aid provision accordingly. Another example would be where particular court proceedings are moved to a tribunal. It may cease to be appropriate to provide funding for advocacy for those proceedings, so an amendment to Part 3 of Schedule 1 would be needed..."

4.13 While there is a recognition that the power to omit or vary services in what is now section 9(2) of the 2012 Act is a wide one, there is no indication at all in these passages or in any of the other Parliamentary materials identified by the Ministry of Justice that the Government proposed to exercise the power to create a general exception of the type now contemplated under which individuals who do not meet a residence test would be excluded from access to many of the types of civil legal services listed in Part 1 of Schedule 1. On the contrary, it appears to the Committee that the Government consistently presented the power as a focussed one needed to make consequential amendments to Schedule in light of changes to other legislation.

4.14 The Committee therefore reports article 2 of the draft Order on the ground that it would make an unexpected use of the power conferred by sections 9(2) and 41 of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012.

5 Draft S.I.: Reported for unusual use of enabling power

Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014 (Draft S.I.)


5.1 The Committee draws the special attention of both House to these draft Regulations on the grounds that they appear to contain an unusual use of the power to make them.

5.2 The draft Regulations would be made under section 40 of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014. Part 2 would require local government bodies in England, including town and parish councils to allow: members of the public to film, photograph or make sound recordings of proceedings of meetings; those not present at meetings to see and hear proceedings; and reporting of and commentating on the proceedings. Part 3 would require officers of local government bodies in England, again including town and parish councils, to make a written record of certain decisions and to make the record available for inspection by members of the public on request. An officer with custody of the record who without reasonable excuse either intentionally obstructs a person exercising the right to inspect, or refuses a request to provide a written record or background papers, is guilty of a criminal offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 1 on the standard scale.

5.3 Given that the draft Regulations appear to impose significant new obligations on local government bodies, and create new criminal offences, the Committee asked the Department for Communities and Local Government to explain the justification for regulation 1 which would bring the whole of the Regulations into force on the day after the day on which they are made.

5.4 In a memorandum printed at Appendix 5, the Department explains why it considers there is a pressing need to bring the Regulations into force at the earliest opportunity, in particular so as to put an end to incidents where persons are prevented from reporting on local government meetings using social media. The Department denies that the Regulations would impose any significant new administrative or organisational burdens, and asserts that no significant preparation time is needed. All that is required is that "once the Regulations are in force, particular behaviours by officers and members need to be adopted". The new criminal offence (the Department says) closely mirrors an existing offence in Regulations about access to information in Council executives, and can only be committed where the person concerned adopts an intentional and proactive course of action.

5.5 The Department considers that all local government bodies would be in a position now to comply with the Regulations' requirements, given that the Government's proposals for the Regulations are widely known in the local government sector. The Department says it will ensure that any Parliamentary approval of the draft Regulations "is widely and rapidly communicated across the local government sector, as well as likewise communicating any subsequent coming into force date".

5.6 In the view of the Committee it is fundamentally objectionable, in the absence of a compelling reason, for a new law which requires persons affected to adopt different patterns of behaviour to be brought into force before they have sufficient time to familiarise themselves with its provisions, and to make any necessary changes to their practices and procedures.

5.7 This explains the convention (which started in 1982) that, except in cases of particular need, primary legislation does not come into force less than two months after the date on which it is enacted. It is also the rationale for the convention that an instrument subject to the negative procedure should not be made so as to come into force less than 21 days after laying. The Committee may draw an instrument to the special attention of each House where it is not satisfied with the explanation proffered for that instrument's non-compliance with this convention.

5.8 Neither convention applies to instruments subject to the affirmative procedure.  However, the Committee considers that the rationale for the conventions applies with equal force to an affirmative instrument which significantly diminishes the legal rights of persons affected, or imposes new duties on such persons which are significantly more onerous than before, and requires them to adopt different patterns of behaviour accordingly.  In the absence of a strong policy justification, it is in the view of the Committee unreasonable for the legislator to provide for changes of the law of this type to be brought into force on the day after the instrument is made (which is entirely within the choosing of the legislator), or indeed on a date earlier than appears to give those affected a reasonable chance to adapt to the changes required.  As a starting assumption, the Committee considers that a date earlier than 21 days after an instrument of this type is made is unlikely to be reasonable.

5.9 These considerations apply a fortiori where a draft instrument such as this creates criminal sanctions for a failure to comply with an obligation. It would in theory be possible for an offence under regulation 10 of these draft Regulations to be committed on or shortly after the day the instrument comes into force which, if it is the day after it is made, is likely to be before the instrument has even been printed and published[1].

5.10 Respondents to the consultation carried out by the Department, including the National Association of Local Councils, appear not to share the Department's view that the Regulations will require no new significant administrative or organisational burdens. Indeed section 8.4 of the Explanatory Memorandum refers to concerns that provisions in the draft Regulations, such as filming or recording a meeting, and recording and publishing decisions taken by officers, would have significant detrimental, costly and disproportionate effects on local councils.

5.11 While the Committee notes the Department's intention rapidly to communicate Parliament's approval of the draft Regulations and the subsequent coming into force date, it is quite plausible that the Department's communication would not reach all persons affected (for example officers in small parish councils) until after they were supposed to have put the new law into effect.

5.12 The Committee also remains unconvinced by the argument that the Government's intentions are widely known in the local government sector. Although the length of the legislative process generally means that those affected by a proposed new law are on notice of the intention to make it, there will remain uncertainties about whether it will be enacted, and the precise form it will take, with the result that persons potentially affected will delay making practical arrangements for compliance until its enactment and precise terms are beyond doubt. So, in the case of these draft Regulations, it is possible that either House of Parliament may not approve them, or that the Secretary of State may ultimately decide not to make them in their present form.

5.13 It follows that the Committee does not find compelling the justification that the Department has offered for the provision which would bring the Regulations into force on the day after that on which they are made. There is nothing in the Department's memorandum to indicate that the urgency for the changes in the law made by the draft Regulations is so great that they have to be brought into force immediately, denying those affected any time to prepare for their implementation.

  1. The Committee therefore reports regulation 1 of the draft Regulations on the ground that it appears to make an unusual use of the power conferred by section 40 of the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014.



1   Section 3(2) of the Statutory Instruments Act 1946 confers a defence on a person who proves that the instrument had not been issued "by or under the authority of His Majesty's Stationery Office at the date of the alleged contravention unless it is proved that at that date reasonable steps had been taken for the purpose of bringing the purport of the instrument to the notice of the public, or of persons likely to be affected by it, or of the person charged". Back


 
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