Book Chapter

Lord Cairns' Act and Statutory Interpretation: Give the Court an Inch, They'll Take a Mile

Katy Barnett

Statutory Interpretation in Private Law | Federation Press | Published : 2019


This chapter looks at the way in which the drafting of different versions of Lord Cairns’ Act has allowed courts considerable latitude to extend the reach of awards under that statute. The original provision is prolix, but gives no guidance given as to how courts are to calculate damages awarded in lieu of specific relief. In fact, the plain English redraft had the unintended consequence of extending the reach of the statute even further. The English, Australian and other Commonwealth versions of Lord Cairns’ Act will be compared with the Indian, Pakistani and Malaysian versions. The latter arguably represent the original intention of Lord Cairns’ Act, but they have not been extended in the ..

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University of Melbourne Researchers