Best practice guide on preparing primary legislation republished



James Wolffe QC

A guide aimed at making Scotland’s laws clear, accessible and easy to understand has been republished. 

First published in 2016, Drafting Matters! aims to help the lawyers who draft legislation understand the important factors which underpin every single word of a bill. 

The guidance, published by the Scottish government’s Parliamentary Counsel Office, provides advice on style, technique and best practice. 

Lord Advocate James Wolffe QC, who has overall responsibility for Scotland’s legislation, said: “I am pleased that the Scottish government’s Parliamentary Counsel Office has published this updated version of Drafting Matters!

“It continues to be an excellent resource for those who wish to understand how legislation is prepared and it shows the determination of our drafters to achieve the highest standards of quality.”

Chief Parliamentary Counsel, Andy Beattie said: “The guidance shows our commitment, as Scotland’s Centre of Legislative Excellence, to draft clear, effective and accessible legislation which is as easy to understand as possible.  It sheds light on the law-making process and helps us to work with legislative users to continually improve the quality of Scotland’s legislation.”

In addition to a general review of content in line with drafting best practice and feedback received on the first edition, it now includes new material on a range of topics including Crown application, the use of alternative charges in criminal proceedings and the creation of statutory offices.

Download Drafting Matters! here