This is a single section from Chapter 16. Read the full chapter here.

Is a new statutory power required?

A new statutory power should only be created if no suitable existing power or alternative exists that can achieve the policy objective.


If there is already clear authority in existing legislation, it will be inappropriate to grant the same power in new legislation. This will lead to duplication and a lack of certainty in the law, particularly where only one Act is amended (this may create an unintended distinction between the two provisions (see Chapter 2).

If there is an existing common law power, careful consideration must be given to whether or not it is sufficient. If it is not sufficient, consideration should be given to replacing it with a statutory power. If the intention is to limit or extinguish the common law power, the new legislation must clearly state that (see Chapter 2).

If an existing power is relied on to perform a new function created by legislation, that power must be clearly identified in the documentation that supports the legislation along with the reasons why it is considered that the new function can be exercised under it.

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