Law Reform Commission’s remit

 

Sir, – The Law Reform Commission was created by statute in 1975 to make proposals for the reform of the law.

It was given no role in relation to the Constitution.

It is a questionable departure for the commission to issue a report endorsing the constitutionality of prospective legislation, as it has done with proposals to cap damages in personal injuries cases (“Plan for court personal injury cap guide likely to be constitutional”, News, September30th).

Under the Constitution, competence to decide whether a law is unconstitutional is reserved to the superior courts.

By offering an authoritative view on the constitutionality of prospective legislation, the commission risks being accused of improper interference in litigation where this is in dispute.

It may embarrass the judges in such cases who have to decide whether the legislation is constitutional. – Yours, etc,

CHARLES LYSAGHT,

(Counsellor, Law Reform

Commission,1978-88),

Merrion,

Dublin 4.