Posts Tagged ‘Law Reform Commission’

Law Reform Commission: Conference on Reform of the Law on Personal Debt

October 27, 2009 Leave a comment

LRCThe Law Reform Commission will hold its annual conference on Wednesday 18 November 2009 in the beautiful Main Conference Hall in Dublin Castle. The conference fee is €40 and the theme is the reform of the law on personal debt, on which the Commission published a Consultation Paper recently.

Among others, the conference will be addressed by Justice Catherine McGuinness, the President of the Commission, and Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform Dermot Ahern. The full programme and conference brochure is available here, where you will also find a registration form.

Ending Imprisonment for debt is only the first step in reshaping our prison policy

October 21, 2009 Leave a comment

The Law Reform Commission’s Consultation Paper on Personal Debt Management and Debt Enforcement, published recently, provisionally recommended that imprisonment should not be an option for debt recovery. The Commission’s position, based on a thorough assessment of current Irish and international practice, is a sensible and welcome one. While there are many sound reasons against using imprisonment for debt, our Government recently reaffirmed it as a possible sanction for debtors, albeit one which is now more difficult to impose. The Enforcement of Court Orders (Amendment) Act 2009 was rushed into law following a High Court case which struck down the constitutionality of the original legislation allowing debtors to be jailed. That decision did not say that imprisonment for debt was impermissible in all circumstances. Rather, the High Court stated that there needed to be procedural protections in place before a person could be jailed for debt.

Instead of taking the opportunity presented by the judgment to eliminate imprisonment for debt in all cases, the Oireachtas decided to put in place these procedural protections, but retain the ultimate sanction of imprisonment for those who wilfully refuse to pay and there are no goods in the debtors possession which could be taken in fulfilment of the debt. Read more…

New from the LRC: On the Legal Aspects of Family Relationships

September 18, 2009 2 comments

LRCFollowing on from Aoife’s recent post about the state of children’s rights in Ireland, I wanted to draw readers’ attention to the Law Reform Commission‘s recent Consultation Paper on the Legal Aspects of Family Relationships. The principal researcher on the paper was Claire Murray, who is – amongst other things – a PhD candidate at the Centre for Criminal Justice and Human Rights at UCC and a future star of Irish feminist legal theory.

By ‘family relationships’ the paper means the relationships between children and adults. Its particular focus is on the rights of the child’s extended family and the rights of unmarried fathers. It proposes important reforms in an area of law where antiquated notions of guardianship, custody and access presently hold sway. The Irish Times reported on the paper here and a summary of the key proposals is here.  My aim here is to note one of the more important themes in the paper’s approach (in very broad brush-strokes). Perhaps substantive discussion on the technical elements of the proposals will ensue in the comments. And for those of you with strong views on the matter, the Commission invites your submissions on its proposals.

Read more…