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The United Kingdom's Statutory Bill of RightsConstitutional and Comparative Perspectives$
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Roger Masterman and Ian Leigh

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780197265376

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197265376.001.0001

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Deconstructing the Mirror Principle

Deconstructing the Mirror Principle

(p.111) 5 Deconstructing the Mirror Principle
The United Kingdom's Statutory Bill of Rights

Roger Masterman

British Academy

The notion that the protections afforded by domestic courts pursuant to the Human Rights Act should ‘mirror’ the rights enforced by the European Court of Human Rights has been a recurring feature of judicial discussions on the nature and extent of the ‘Convention rights’ in domestic law, and has exercised a powerful influence over how those rights have been given legal effect. This chapter argues that the mirror principle is based on an overly narrow interpretation of the purpose of the Human Rights Act, provides an inadequate foundation for the development of domestic rights jurisprudence, and is an increasingly inaccurate description of judicial and constitutional practice.

Keywords:   Human Rights Act, mirror principle, Convention rights, European Court, Human Rights, judicial technique, judicial reasoning

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