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PLAIN LANGUAGE: A view from the Office of the Parliamentary Counsel, London Hayley Rogers Office of the Parliamentary Counsel UNCLASSIFIED.

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Presentation on theme: "PLAIN LANGUAGE: A view from the Office of the Parliamentary Counsel, London Hayley Rogers Office of the Parliamentary Counsel UNCLASSIFIED."— Presentation transcript:

1 PLAIN LANGUAGE: A view from the Office of the Parliamentary Counsel, London Hayley Rogers Office of the Parliamentary Counsel UNCLASSIFIED

2 2 P LAIN L ANGUAGE : A view from OPC Why is it so difficult? Who reads legislation? What are the obstacles? Do we need plain language – or Good Law? What can drafters do? What would make things easier?

3 3 Users Intermediaries (eg lawyers) Sources of Law (eg legislation in books) Who are our readers? Old world...

4 4 Sources of Law Digital (eg legal) Services Users New world Intermediaries (eg lawyers) Helping each other using social media and through online communities Mainly not lawyers, but now directly accessing sources of law (eg 2m-3m visitors per month to legislation.gov.uk) Rapid growth in digital legal services, (including GOV.UK?), as well as private sector On the web... but still produced as if nothing else has changed?

5 5 Why is legislation so difficult? UNCLASSIFIED

6 6 necessaryclear accessible coherent effective Vision for good law

7 7 Who are they? What are their needs? What knowledge and assumptions do they bring?

8 Tools of the trade Structure Tell the story Help people find their way round Sense-bites Something different? Language Jargon-busting Layout Readable, intuitive, clear 8

9 Treasure Act 1996 9

10 Theft Act 1968 10

11 Consumer Rights Bill 11

12 Growth and Infrastructure Act 2013 12

13 S.3 Income Tax Act 2007 13

14 S.2 Pensions Act 2014 14

15 Sch. 20 Pensions Act 2014 15

16 S.2 Calendar New Style Act 1750 16

17 S.1 – 2 Theft Act 1968 17

18 S.1 Treasure Act 1996 18

19 Sch. 1 Pensions Act 2014 19

20 S.181 Finance Act 2013 20

21 S.2 Calendar New Style Act 1750 21

22 S.1 – 2 Theft Act 1968 22

23 S.1 Pensions Act 2014 23

24 Sch. 7 Weights and Measures Act 1985 24

25 25 S.2 Pensions Act 2014

26 26 Calendar Bill 2014

27 What are the obstacles? 27 Complex policy Time Existing legislative landscape

28 What might help? 28 “Keeling schedules” Virtual codification Consolidation Layout User focus

29 Keeling Schedule 29

30 Defralex Search Results 30

31 31 A modern lay out for legislation?

32 32

33 33 Draft Care and Support Bill

34 34 Draft Care and Support Bill (easy read)

35 To find out more... Visit: www.gov.uk/good-lawwww.gov.uk/good-law Email: GoodLaw@cabinet-office.x.gsi.gov.ukGoodLaw@cabinet-office.x.gsi.gov.uk Good law blog: www.good-law.tumblr.comwww.good-law.tumblr.com On Twitter: #goodlaw#goodlaw 35 UNCLASSIFIED


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