Law Revision Act


Published: 1988

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Law Revision (CAP. 245 1

CHAPTER 245

THE LAW REVISION ACT

Arrangement of Sections
Section

1. Short title.
2. Interpretation.
3. Appointment of Law Revision Commissioner.
4. Functions of Commissioner.
5. Form of publication.
6. Page of Laws to be headed "Laws of Antigua and

Barbuda".
Inclusion or removal of pages to be authorised by Order.
Revision date and periodic revision of Laws.
Special revision date for particular Law.
Certain officers to maintain sets of Laws.
Bound sets of Laws to be kept for record.
Contents of Laws of Antigua and Barbuda.
Power to omit certain Laws.
Validity of laws not affected by omission from the Laws.
Laws of Antigua and Barbuda constitute sole and pro-

per Statute Book.
Powers of Commissioner.
No power to make alterations of substance.

18. ~ e v i s e d Laws not to operate as new laws.
19. Altered provisions authentic as if so enacted.
20. Construction of references to laws embodied in the Laws.
21. Rectification of error of omission in the Laws.
22. Alternative mode of amending Laws.
23. Further powers on First revision.
24. Expenses of Revision.

SCHEDULE.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Law Reuision (CAP. 245 3

- -

LAW REVISION

An Act to provide for the Revision of the Laws of
Antigua and Barbuda and for matters connected therewith.

(15th July, 1988.)

1. This Act may be cited as the Law Revision Act. Short title.

2. In this Act- Interpretation.

"Act" includes part of an Act but does not include sub-
sidiary legislation made under the Act;

"Commissioner" means the Law Revision Commis-
sioner appointed under Section 3;

"in force", in relation to any written law other than
a written law to which Section 12(2) applies, means
made and brought into force;

"Law" means the revised edition of the written laws
of Antigua and Barbuda referred to in Section 4;

"Law Revision Order" means an Order made by the
Commissioner under Section 7:

"revision date" means a date appointed by Order under
Section 8(1) to be a revision date for the Laws; and,
where the Laws contain any particular written law
last revised under Section 9 , a reference in this or
any other written law to the revision date of the
last revision date of the laws shall, in relation to
that particular written law, include a reference to
its special revision date;

"written law7' means any Act, Ordinance and any sub-
sidiary legislation which includes Orders, Proclama-
tions, Rules, Bye-Laws, or Regulations made or
issued by any body or person having power or
authority under any Act or Ordinance.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

4 CAP. 245) Law Revision

Appointment of
Law Revision 3. (1) For the purposes of this Act, the Attorney-
Commissioner. General shall appoint a Law Revision Commissioner to

discharge the duties required under this Act.

(2) In case the Commissioner is unable for any cause
to fully discharge his duties under this Act, the Attorney-
General may appoint some other fit and proper person to
be a Commissioner in his stead.

Functions of
Commissioner. 4. (1) The Commissioner shall prepare, publish and

maintain a revised edition of the written laws of Antigua
and Barbuda (to be called the Laws of Antigua and ~arbuda)
in accordance with the provisions of this Act.

(2) The Commissioner may prepare and cause to be
printed a separate volume as a supplement to the Revised
Edition of Laws enacted after the appointed date as the
Attorney-General may appoint under subsection (1) of
Section 8.

Form of 5 . The laws shall be published in loose-leaf form or
publication. in such other form as the Commissioner may determine and

shall comprise such pages as may be authorised to be included
therein under Section 6.

Page of Laws to 6. (1) Every page comprised in the Laws shall bear
be headed "Laws
of and at the top the heading "Laws of Antigua and Barbuda".
Barbuda".

(2) A page bearing the heading prescribed by
subsection (1) and appearing in other respects to be part of
the Laws shall for all purposes be presumed to be a part
of the Laws.

(3) Except as otherwise provided, any person who
prints, publishes or knowingly has in his possession any page
falsely purporting to be a page of Laws or so closely
resembling a page of the laws as to be likely to be mistaken
for such page is guilty of an offence and is liable on sum-
mary conviction to a fine of five thousand dollars and to
imprisonment for two years.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Law Revision (CAP. 245 5

7. In the event of a loose-leaf edition- Inclusion or
removal of pages

(a) The Commissioner shall by Order authorise the IPy!rg:horised
inclusion in the Laws of every page to be comprised
therein, and every page so authorised, and no other,
shall form part of the Laws.

(6 ) The Commissioner may by Order direct the
removal of any page from the Laws and any page so
directed to be removed shall cease to form part of the
Laws.

(c) An Order under paragraph (a ) or (b) may pro-
vide that the page be included in or removed from the
Laws as from a date to be prescribed by a subsequent
Order.

(d) Every page comprised in the Laws shall bear
on its face or over-leaf a reference to the Law Revision
Order by which its inclusion therein is authorised.

8. (1) The Attorney-General may by Order appoint ~ ; ~ ~ ~ ~ $ ~
a date to be a revision date for the Laws. revision of Laws.

( 2 ) The Commissioner shall revise the Laws as soon
as practicable after each revision date, that is to say, the
Commissioner shall prepare the necessary pages and make
the necessary Orders for the inclusion of these pages in the
Laws and (with respect to the second or any subsequent revi-
sion) for the removal of pages no longer required, to the
extent that the Laws shall, subject to such omissions as are
authorised under Section 13, contain all the written Laws
in operation in Antigua and Barbuda on such revision date.

9. ( 1 ) In special circumstances, the Attorney-General SP ecial revision
date for

may, by Order, appoint a date other than the revision date particular Law.
appointed under Section 8 as a special revision date for a
particular written law specified in the Order.

( 2 ) The Commissioner shall revise the particular writ-
ten law as soon as practicable after the special revision date
and shall publish it, as in operation on that date, in the Laws.

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6 CAP. 245) Law Revision

Certain officers
to maintain sets
of Laws.

(3) In every such case, the Commissioner shall insert
an appropriate note in the Laws with reference to the special
revision date of that written law.

10. In the event of a loose-leaf edition-
(a) The Commissioner shall cause a copy of every

page authorised to appear in the Laws to be delivered
as soon as practicable after publication to the Attorney-
General, to the Clerk to Parliament, to the Chief
Registrar of the Supreme Court and to the Registrar
of the High Court.

(6) It shall be the duty of the Commissioner and
each of the officers referred to in paragraph (a) to main-
tain one set of the Laws and punctually to insert pages
authorised to be inserted under Section 7(a) and to
remove pages directed to be removed under Section 7(b);
and the Commissioner shall take such further steps as
are necessary to ensure that there shall be at all times
available to the Courts and to the public sets of the Laws
maintained in the manner provided by this paragraph.

Bound sets of
Laws to be kept

1 . (1) The Commissioner shall cause five sets of the
for record. Laws as originally published to be bound in such number

of volumes as the Commissioner may think fit.

(2) The Commissioner shall retain one set and shall
cause one set to be delivered to the Attorney-General, to
the Clerk to Parliament, to the Secretary of the Barbuda
Council, to the Chief Registrar of the Supreme Court and
to the Registrar of the High Court, and it shall be the duty
of the Commissioner and of such officers to maintain in safe
custody their respective sets together with the Orders and
supplementary pages referred to in subsection (3) for the pur-
pose of record.

(3) Every year or at such other intervals as the Com-
missioner may think fit, five sets of all supplementary pages
issued under Section 8 or 9, all Orders made under Sec-
tion 2 l(b)(i) and all pages issued under section 21(b)(ii) shall
be bound in such number of volumes as may be convenient
and shall be dealt with in the same manner as the bound
sets of the Laws as originally published are required to be
dealt with by subsection (2).

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Law Revision (CAP. 245 7

(4) All Orders made under Section 7 or Section 2 l(b)(ii)
shall be included in such order as seems appropriate to the
Commissioner among the pages bound under subsections
( 1 ) and (3 ) .

12. ( 1 ) Subject to subsection ( 2 ) and to Section 13, ~ ; ; ~ ; ~ u : f ~ ~ ~ ~
the Laws shall contain- Barbuda.

(a ) the Constitution of Antigua and Barbuda as in
force on the last revision date;

(b ) every Act in force in Antigua and Barbuda on
the last revision date, unless omitted under Section 13;

(c) such subsidiary legislation in force in Antigua
and Barbuda on the last revision date as the Commis-
sioner thinks fit to include therein;

(4 a chronological list of Acts, a table of contents
and an index;

(e) a list of the Acts omitted under the authority
of Section 13(1) and ( 2 ) ( 4 and ( e ) .

( 2 ) In special circumstances, the Commissioner may
include in the Laws a written law which has been made but
not yet brought into force on the last revision date, but in
every such case the Commissioner shall insert in the Laws
an appropriate note drawing attention to this fact and to
the date of commencement of the written laws; and in rela-
tion to any such law the expression "in force" in
subsection (1) and in Sections 8(2), 9 (2) and 15 means made,
whether brought into operation or not.

13. ( 1 ) The Attorney-General may by Order Power omit
authorise the Commissioner to omit from the Laws any Act cefiain Laws'
or Ordinance specified in the Order.

(2) In addition to any Act or Ordinance omitted under
subsection (I), the Commissioner may further omit from the
Laws-

(a) any Appropriation Act or Supplementary
Appropriation Act;

(b) any applied law of the United Kingdom
Parliament;

Validity of laws
not affected bv
omission from
the Laws.

Laws of Antigua
and Barbuda
constitute sole
and proper
Statute Book.

Powers of
Commissioner.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

CAP. 245) Law Revision

(c) any Act authorising the raising or guarantee-
ing of a specific loan;

(d) Acts or Ordinances which have fallen into
desuetude;

( e ) any Act or Ordinance of a temporary or
personal nature which can in the opinion of the
Commissioner be conveniently omitted.

(3) Any Act or Ordinance so omitted under subsec-
tion (1) or (2) shall be repealed by a separate Act.

14. No written law omitted from the Laws, under
the authority of this Act or otherwise, shall be deemed to
be without force and validity by reason only of the fact that
it is so omitted.

15. Subject to Sections 14 and 17, the pages duly
authorised for inclusion in the Laws shall, in all courts and
for all purposes, be the sole and proper Statute Book of
Antigua and Barbuda in respect of the written laws contained
therein as in operation on the last revision date; and all such
written laws shall be judicially noticed.

16. In the preparation of the Laws for any revision
under Section 8 or 9, the Commissioner shall have the follow-
ing powers:

(a) to omit-

(i) all written laws or parts of written laws which
have been repealed expressly or by necessary
implication or which have expired or have
become spent or have had their effect;

(ii) all repealing provisions contained in written
laws and also all tables or lists of repealed writ-
ten laws whether contained in schedules or
otherwise;

(iii) all words or enactments in any written law or
provision of a written law;

(iv) all provisions prescribing the date when, or
manner in which, any written law or part of
any written law is to come into operation,

LAWS OF AhiTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Law Revision (CAP. 245 I)

where such omission can, in the opinion of the
Commissioner, conveniently be made;

(v) all amending written laws or part of written
laws where the amendments effected by such
written laws have been embodied by the Com-
missioner in the written laws to which they
relate;

( 6 ) to consolidate into one written law any two or
more written laws in pari materia, making the alterations
thereby rendered necessary in the consolidated written
laws, and affixing such date thereto as may seem most
convenient;

(c) to alter the order of the provisions in any writ-
ten law and in all cases where it is necessary to do so,
to renumber the provisions of any written law;

(6) to alter the form or arrangement of any provi-
sion of any written law, either by combining it in whole
or part with another provision or other provisions, or
by dividing it into two or more provisions or by transpos-
ing words;

(e) to divide any written law, whether consolidated
or not, into parts or other divisions and to give such
parts or divisions suitable headings;

V) to transfer any provisions contained in any writ-
ten law from that written law to any other written law
to which it more properly belongs or to a separate writ-
ten law;

(g) to arrange the written laws, whether con-
solidated or not, in any group or sequence that may
be convenient irrespective of the date of enactment;

( h ) to add a long title, a short title or a citation
to any written law which may require it, and, where
desirable, to alter the long title, short title or citation
of any written law;

(2') to shorten, simplify, clarify and otherwise alter
the phraseology of any written law;

@ to correct grammatical and typographical errors,
or any clerical o r . printing errors in any written law,

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

10 CAP. 245) Law Revision

and for that purpose to make verbal additions, omis-
sions or alterations not affecting the meaning of any
written law;

(k) to add, delete, alter and substitute definitions
of terms and expressions in any written law;

(I) to supply or alter marginal notes, head notes
or headings;

(m) to correct cross references;

( n ) to make such formal alterations as to names,
localities, offices, titles and otherwise as may be necessary
to bring any written law into conformity with the cir-
cumstances of Antigua and Barbuda.

(0) to make such modifications and adaptations and
to attach such qualifications and exceptions to any writ-
ten law as may appear to be necessary or desirable by
reason of changes in the Constitution of Antigua and
Barbuda or of any Commonwealth territory or generally
in the circumstances of Antigua and Barbuda or in the
Government or the Public Service thereof;

@) to do all things relating to form and method
which may be necessary for the perfecting of the Laws.

No power to
make alterations

17. (1) Nothing in this Act, except in Section 23, shall
of substance. be construed to confer power on the Commissioner to alter

the substance of any written law.

( 2 ) In any case where it appears necessary to the Com-
missioner to alter the substance of any written law, other-
wise than under section 23, the Commissioner may draft a
Bill with a report stating the reason for the purpose.

( 3 ) Every Bill drafted pursuant to subsection (2) shall
be submitted to the Attorney-General who shall, upon the
authortity of the Cabinet, cause such Bill to be submitted
to Parliament to be dealt with in accordance with normal
procedure.

Revised Laws not
to operate as new

18. The Laws shall not be held to operate as new
laws. laws, but shall be construed and have effect as a consolida-

tion and as declaratory of the written laws that have been

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Law Revision (CAP. 245 11

revised and published therein and shall not be construed as
a legislative endorsement of any judicial interpretation of
a pre-existing law.

19. Where, having regard to any provisions of the ;:F;yons
Interpretation Act or any other Act substituting therefor the authentic as if so
Commissioner has, in exercise of any power conferred by enacted.
this Act, recorded a written law by way of simplification, Cap. 224.
or otherwise omitted any provision thereof, or altered any
written law in any other way, without affecting the substance
thereof, the altered provisions of the written law published
in accordance with this Act shall for all purposes be deemed
to be the authentic version of the written law as if they had
been enacted in that form.

20. Where in any written law or other instrument Construction of
references to laws or document reference is made to any written law the provi- embodied in the

sions of which have been by virtue of this Act embodied in Laws-
the Laws, such reference shall where necessary and prac-
ticable be deemed to extend and apply to the corresponding
provisions in the Laws.

21. In the event of a loose-leaf edition- Rectification of
error of omission

(a) Where any error made in the publication of in the Laws.
the Laws comes to the attention of the Commissioner,
the Commissioner may forthwith rectify the error in the
manner provided by this section.

( 6 ) The Commissioner may rectify the error-

(i) by an Order (to be called a "Correction
Order7') making the required amendments to
the Laws; and (either alternatively or in
addition);

(ii) by a Law Revision Order removing, inserting
or replacing such pages in the Laws as the cir-
cumstances may require.

(6 ) A Correction Order or a Law Revision Order
made for the purpose of rectifying an error may have
retrospective effect as from the date of the inclusion in
the Laws of the page containing the error.

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12 CAP. 245) Law Revision

Alternative mode
of amending 22. In the event of a loose-leaf edition-
Laws. (a) Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 7(a),

where the Commissioner thinks it expedient, in the
interests of economy or convenience, in revising any
page of the Laws to which an amendment has been made
since the last revision date or to which the Commis-
sioner proposes to make an amendment, the Commis-
sioner may, as an alternative to incorporating the
amendment in the Laws by removing the page and
inserting in its place a page setting out the Law as
amended,

(i) allow the page to which the amendment related
(in this section called the "amended page")
to continue to form part of the Laws; and

(ii) include in the Laws a page (in this section
called an "amendment page") setting out the
particulars of the amendment.

( 6 ) The exercise of his powers under this section
in respect of an amendment shall in no way prejudice
the power of the Commissioner at any time to incor-
porate that amendment in the Laws by removing the
amended page and inserting in its place a page setting
out the Law as amended.

(6) An amendment page shall for all purposes form
part of the Laws and may be dealt with in accordance
with the provisions of this Act in the same manner as
any other page of the Laws.

Further powers
on first revision.

23. In the first revision under this Act of any written
law in force at the commencement of this Act, the Commis-
sioner, in addition to the powers and duties conferred on
him by the above provisions of this Act shall have the fur-
ther powers and duties set out in the Schedule. Schedule.

Expenses of
Revision.

24. The expenses of and incidental to the prepara-
tion and publication of the Laws shall be a charge on the
Consolidated Fund.

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Law Revision (CAP. 245 13

Schedule

The additional powers and duties of the Commissioner provided for in Sec-
tion 23 of this Act are as follows:

1. (a) In any written law imposing a specified fine, the Commissioner shall
in lieu of such fine substitute a fine calculated in accordance with the provi-
sions of subparagraphs (b) and (6).

( b ) The fine shall first be increased as follows-

(i) where the law imposing the fine was made before the year 1962
the fine shall be multiplied by 10;

(ii) where the law imposing the fine was made in or after the year 1962
but before the year 1967 the fine shall be multiplied by 10;

(iii) where the law imposing the fine was made in or after the year 1967
but before the year 1971 the fine shall be multiplied by 5;

(iv) where the law imposing the fine was made in or after the year 1971
but before the year 1976 the fine shall be multiplied by 3;

(v) where the law imposing the fine was made in or after the year 1976
but before the year 1982 the fine shall be multiplied by 2;

and where the law imposing the fine is an amending law inserting the fine in
a principal law in which one or more other fines are imposed, the Commissioner
may, for the purp.oses of this subparagraph treat the amending law as having
been made at the date of the principal law or at such intervening date that the
fine increased in accordance with the above formula may, in the judgment of
the Commissioner, best accord with the scale of fines prescribed in the principal law.

(c) The figure arrived at in calculating the increased fines (in dollars)
in accordance with subparagraph (b) and any monetary fine imposed by a
law made in 1982 or after shall, subject to the exceptions indicated, be rounded
off as follows-

(i) where not more than $25, the figure (if not a multiple of five) shall
be rounded off to the next higher figure which is a multiple of five;

(ii) where more than $25, but not more than $50, the figure (if not
a multiple of ten) shall be rounded off to the next higher figure
which is a multiple of ten;

(iii) where more than $50, but not more than $100, the figure (if not
a multiple of twenty-five) shall be rounded off to the next higher
figure which is a multiple of twenty-five;

(iv) where more than $100, but not more than $300, the figure (if not
a multiple of fifty) shall be rounded off to the next higher figure
which is a multiple of fifty;

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

14 CAP. 245) Law Revision

(v) where more than $300, but not more than $500, the figure (if not
a multiple of one hundred) shall be rounded off to the next higher
figure which is a multiple of one hundred;

(vi) where more than $500, but not more than $1,000, the figure (if
not a multiple of two hundred and fifty) shall be rounded off to
the next higher figure which is a multiple of two hundred and fifty;

(vii) where more than $1,000, but not more than $2,000, the figure
(if not a multiple of five hundred) shall be rounded off to the next
higher figure which is a multiple of five hundred;

(viii) where more than $2,000, the figure (if not a multiple of one thou-
sand) shall be rounded off to the next higher figure which is a multi-
ple of one thousand.

(d) In this paragraph "fine" includes any sum to be paid or forfeited
by way of a penalty.

2. The following sums occurring in any written law shall be increased in
the manner provided in paragraph 1 as if they were fines imposed within the mean-
ing of that paragraph:

(a) a sum prescribed as a fine or a maximum fine that may be imposed
by a subordinate law-making authority; or

(b) a sum specified for the purpose of a bond or recognizance into which
anyone is required to enter in or in respect of any criminal matter.

3. (1) When a written law prescribes a monetary sum other than a monetary
sum to which paragraphs 1 and 2 apply, the Commissioner, with the approval
of the Attorney-General signified by Notice in the Gazette, may increase the sum
to an amount not exceeding the amount that would be authorised if the sum were
a fine to which paragraph 1 applies.

(2) (a) Where a written law prescribes a fee for any purpose the Commis-
sioner, with the approval of the Attorney-General signified by Notice in the
Gazette, may delete the fee from the written law and make any necessary
consequential deletions and adaptations in the written law.

(6) In this subparagraph, the expression "fee" means any sum required
to be paid as a charge in respect of any service, grant, permission or other
consideration.

4. (1) Where any law (in whatever terms) prescribes six or twelve cents
for any purpose, the Commissioner may round off the figure and substitute ten
or fifteen cents, respectively.

LAWS OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

Law Reuision (CAP. 245

(2) Where any law (in whatever terms) prescribes twenty-four cents or twenty-
four dollars or any multiple of these sums for any purpose, the Commissioner
may round off the figure and substitute, respectively, twenty-five cents or twenty-
five dollars and, in the case of a multiple of any of these sums, a proportionately
rounded-off sum.

5 . Where any provision of a written law vests any functions in a public
officer (which expression in this paragraph includes the Governor-General, a
Minister, a Judge of the Supreme Court and the holder of public office without
emolument), the Commissioner, with the approval of the Prime Minister signified
by Notice in the Gazette, may substitute a provision vesting the functions in any
other public officer.

6 . Where any written law provides for subsidiary legislation made by an
authority to be submitted to the Senate or the House or both in such terms that
the subsidiary legislation is in substance subject to negative or subject to affir-
mative resolution of the Senate or the House or both the Commissioner may
substitute a provision to the effect that the subsidiary legislation may be made
by the authority subject to negative resolution or subject to affirmative resolution
of the Senate or the House or both or provide that such subsidiary Legislation
shall be laid before the Senate or the House or both as the case may be and may
omit any provision contained in the written law as to the period within which
the subsidiary legislation is to be submitted to the Senate or the House or both
or within which the Senate or the House or both are to approve or annul such
subsidiary legislation or any provision as to the proof of any matters or things
in relation thereto or any other such ancillary provisions.

7. (1) Where a reference to any weight or measure other than a metric
weight or measure occurs in any written law the Commissioner may substitute
the equivalent metric weight or measure within the meaning of any law which
provides for such conversion.

(2) With the approval of the Attorney-General signified by Notice in the Gazette,
the weight or measure substituted under sub-paragraph (1) may vary from the
equivalent of the weight or measure for which it is substituted but only so far
as, in the opinion of the Attorney-General such variation is necessary or expe-
dient for the purpose of facilitating the practical application and administration
of the particular law.

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16 CAP. 245) Law Revision

ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

STATUTORY INSTRUMENTS

1988, No.28

NOTICE by the Attorney-General under section 1 of the Law Revision Act
1987 (No. 19 of 1987) bringing that Act into force.

NOTICE is given that I appoint the 15th day of July, 1988 as the date on
which the Law Revision Act 1987, (No. 19 of 1987) comes into force.

Dated the 7th day of July, 1988.

K.M.E. Ford, Q.C.
Attorney -General.

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