A panel of experts will examine whether there is a need to reform the Human Rights Act in an independent review launched by the government today (7 December 2020).
The review will be led by former Court of Appeal Judge, Sir Peter Gross, and will consider if the HRA needs updating after 2 decades of being in force.
As promised in the Manifesto, it will take a fresh look at the Act – how it operates and protects human rights – to ensure it continues to meet the needs of the society it serves.
Specifically, the review will consider:
- The relationship between the domestic courts and the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR). This includes how the duty to ‘take into account’ of ECtHR case law has been applied in practice, and whether dialogue between our domestic courts and the ECtHR works effectively and if there is room for improvement.
- The impact of the HRA on the relationship between the judiciary, executive and Parliament, and whether domestic courts are being unduly drawn into areas of policy.
- The implications of the way in which the Human Rights Act applies outside the territory of the UK and whether there is a case for change.
The UK remains committed to the European Convention on Human Rights. The review is limited to looking at the structural framework of the Human Rights Act, rather than the rights themselves.