Describe judicial controls on delegated legislation

Judicial controls on delegated legislation refer to the mechanisms through which the courts oversee and review regulations made by administrative or executive bodies under the authority of primary legislation. These controls are intended to ensure that delegated legislation remains within the boundaries set by the enabling legislation and adheres to principles of legality and fairness.

Ultra vires doctrine: The ultra vires doctrine is a fundamental principle of judicial control. It states that delegated legislation must stay within the limits prescribed by the enabling Act. If a court finds that delegated legislation exceeds the powers granted by the enabling Act or is inconsistent with its provisions, it can declare the regulation invalid and unenforceable.

Procedural fairness: Courts also review the procedural aspects of delegated legislation to ensure that fair procedures were followed during its creation. This includes evaluating whether proper consultation, notice, and opportunity for affected parties to make representations were provided. Failure to adhere to procedural fairness requirements can result in the regulation being quashed.

Reasonableness and rationality: Courts assess whether the content of delegated legislation is reasonable and rational. They examine whether the regulation is based on relevant considerations, is free from arbitrary or discriminatory elements, and has a rational connection to the objectives of the enabling legislation. If a court determines that the regulation is irrational or unreasonable, it can be invalidated.

Proportionality: In some jurisdictions, courts apply the principle of proportionality to review delegated legislation. They assess whether the regulation strikes a fair balance between the public interest and the impact on individuals' rights and freedoms. If the court finds that the regulation is disproportionate, it may declare it invalid.

Human rights compatibility: Courts examine whether delegated legislation complies with human rights standards and protections. If a regulation is found to be inconsistent with human rights guarantees, such as those enshrined in a constitution or international treaties, it may be struck down or interpreted in a manner that upholds human rights.

Judicial review: Individuals or organisations affected by delegated legislation can challenge its validity through judicial review proceedings. Judicial review allows the courts to examine the legality and fairness of the regulation-making process and the content of the delegated legislation. If the court finds that the regulation is unlawful, it can be declared void or amended.

Doctrine of substantive legitimate expectations: Courts may consider legitimate expectations of individuals or groups who have relied on a certain course of action or past practice. If a change in delegated legislation frustrates these legitimate expectations, the court may review the legality and fairness of the change.

The extent and application of judicial controls on delegated legislation may vary in different legal systems. The specific legal principles, doctrines, and procedures applicable to delegated legislation are determined by the legislative framework and case law of each jurisdiction.
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