Kinds of Legislation, Supreme Legislation & Subordinate Legislation

Fri, 09/02/2011 - 08:17 -- Umar Farooq

There are two kinds of legislation

  1. Supreme Legislation
  2. Subordinate Legislation

1. Supreme Legislation

Supreme legislation is the expression of the legislative will of a supreme authority in a state. It is supreme because no authority can annul, modify or control it. It proceeds from the sovereign or supreme legislative power in the state, and which is therefore, incapable of being abrogated by any other legislative authority.

2. Subordinate Legislation

Subordinate legislation is that which proceeds from any authority other than the sovereign legislation power, and is, therefore, dependent for its existence or validity on some superior or supreme legislative authority. It comes from a subordinate legislature or any authority and is subject to the repealing or sanctioning control of a superior legislation.  In England all form of legislative activity recognized by law, other than the power of parliament are subordinated and subject to parliamentary control.

Types of Subordinate Legislation

The chief forms or types of subordinate legislation are five in number. These are:

1. Colonial Legislation

It means legislation by the legislature of the colonies or other dependencies. The parliament can repeal, alter or supersede any colonial enactment.

2. Executive Legislation

Though the main function of the executive is to enforce laws, but in certain cases, the power of making rules is delegated to the various departments of the government, which is called subordinate delegated legislation.

3. Judicial Legislation

It means rules of procedure made by superior courts for their own guidance under authority delegated to them for the purpose. In other words the superior courts have the power of making rules for the regulation of their own procedures.

4. Municipal Legislation

Sometimes municipal authorities are provided with the power of establishing special laws for the districts under their control. They are allowed to make bye-laws for limited purposes within their areas. These are legislation of local bodies such as municipal or corporations.

5. Autonomous Legislation

It is the process of law making by persons not by the state for their own guidance. Legislation thus made by private persons and the law created may be distinguished as autonomic view. These are autonomous bodies like municipal councils, universities etc.