Chapter 1
A consolidated Courts Act

The alternative: a binary model

1.25If the Commission’s recommendation that there be a unitary Courts Act is not adopted by the Government, it would be feasible to draft two statutes. This would involve leaving the District Courts Act intact (although it too requires revision), and constructing a consolidated Senior Courts Act. We prefer the English nomenclature of “senior” to terms which are slightly pejorative, like “superior” or “higher”. This statute would cover the High Court, Court of Appeal and Supreme Court.

1.26The main advantage of such a course appears to us to be that the coherence of the present Senior Courts would be maintained, in one statute. Any question of an apparent diminution of the role of those courts would be eradicated. If a binary model is adopted, the provisions of the Judicature Amendment Act 1972 could be incorporated into the Senior Courts Act, as discussed in the following chapter.

1.27There are questions as to legislative implementation. If a binary statutory scheme is adopted, the Senior Courts Bill and the District Courts Amendment Bill should be treated as cognate Bills and dealt with together.