5 Secondary legislation
Acts of Parliament can delegate powers to Ministers, or other bodies such as local authorities, to make laws. The Act – the primary legislation – will specify the delegated powers and set out the details of how they are to be used and what is covered by the delegated power.
The laws that are then made are called secondary legislation.
Secondary legislation is often used to fill in the details of Acts: the practical measures that enable the law to be enforced and operate in daily life without overwhelming the work of the UK Parliament. It can also set the date for when provisions of an Act will come into effect as law (commencement orders), or to amend existing laws.
Some secondary legislation is available on, but unlike primary legislation, it is usually necessary to look separately at the original regulations and then any amendments to those regulations. As with primary legislation, you need to remember to check that secondary legislation is in force and whether there have been any amendments.