Mandatory or directory?

Alec Samuels makes the case for updating the Interpretation Act

14 Feb 2020

A notice has to be served. You search for the relevant statute and regulations. You find the form (hopefully the correct one) and complete it. But you make a mistake. How serious is it and what are the consequences?

Statutory regulations prescribe the relevant detail and often the procedure to be followed. For example, in leasehold the regulations may specify the notices to be given, the rent payable, and preconditions for forfeiture. When a notice is to be served, the server has to ascertain whether, and which form is required.

However, the regulations may have been changed. The prescribed form may have been updated. Regulations might have been ‘corrected’ by way of a correction slip. The form may be drafted in d...

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