Human Rights Act 1998
The Act requires UK public authorities to act in accordance with the Convention, except where an Act of Parliament prevents this. It also requires judges, as far as possible, to interpret UK legislation in a way that is cmpatible with the Convention. Where it is not possible to interpret legislation in this way, the judges can issue a declaration of incompatibility, but are not allowed to override the legislation.
Section 21 (5) of the Act abolished the death penalty for the few offences for which it could still in theory be imposed (capital punishment for murder had been abolished in 1965).
Important cases under the HRA include:
- Bellinger v Bellinger (2003) which paved the way for the Gender Recognition Act 2004
- Ghaidan v Godin-Mendoza (2004) which ruled that the surviving partner of a same-sex couple could be treated as a "spouse" for the purpose of succeeding to a tenancy
- application (2012) by the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission for judicial review of the Adoption (Northern Ireland) Order 1987.