Recent appeal cases stress 4 related propositions – ■ purpose is to be considered throughout the interpretive process1, ■ harmony between provisions must be sought2, ■ we must try to ensure the legislative target is hit not missed3, and ■ a purposive answer may rule over ordinary meaning4. These propositions wrap up in a meaningful way the practical impact of our ‘modern approach’. The High Court itself has said next to nothing on interpretation lately. In a case about difficult tax administration provisions, for example, the court wrote but 10 pages and remained wholly silent on interpretation. There are issues bubbling away in the intermediate courts which will ultimately require apex court attention – like the circuity issue with statutory definitions5. However, as a systemic baseline, stability rules! The 4 propositions referred to above are core aspects of that stability.
Gordon Brysland – Tax Counsel Network
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In this episode:
Credits – Gordon Brysland, Oliver Hood & Patrick Boyd.