Department of Justice to prioritise examination of contempt laws this autumn
Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan has instructed his Department to prioritise the examination of contempt laws this autumn.
Ireland’s existing contempt regime is already being examined separately by the judiciary and by the Law Reform Commission (LRC).
The Commission, which first proposed placing contempt laws on a statutory footing in 1994, will publish a report on contempt this year following a consultation.
Meanwhile, the outgoing Chief Justice of Ireland, Mrs Justice Susan Denham, has launched a consultation with the presidents of the courts on whether the laws are sufficient to deal with social media.
Mr Flanagan’s officials in the Department of Justice will examine any legislative proposals arising from either process.
A spokesperson for the Department told Irish Legal News: “Minister Flanagan has requested that the department prioritise the examination of the contempt area in the autumn, including pulling together the strands of ongoing work in this area, any recommendations for legislative action which may result from the current judicial consideration of the issue and the forthcoming LRC recommendations.
“The purpose of this exercise will be to identify and bring forward as quickly as possible whatever urgent changes in the law on contempt are considered necessary.”