Codification of Law Meaning and Kinds

Fri, 09/02/2011 - 08:56 -- Umar Farooq

Codification of Law Meaning

In dictionary meaning code is a systematic collection of statutes, body of law, so arranged as to avoid inconsistency and overlapping. In fact, codification is the systematic process and reduction of the whole body of law into a code in the form of enacted law. Thus, the law which previously was in the shape of customs, ancient texts, judicial decision and fragmentary statutes is collected at one place and presented in systematic arrangement which is known as code.

Salmond defines codification as “the reduction of the whole corpus juis, so far as practicable to form enacted law.”

Advantages of Codification in Law

  1. Codification brings greater certainty of law in a legal system
  2. Code of law is precise in form and is, therefore, easier to learn
  3. Statute law in code conforms the changing needs of the time
  4. Statute law is impersonal in codification

Disadvantages of Codification in Law

  1. It enables intending criminals to find a way out of law because of its defects.
  2. It makes the law rigid and prevents its further growth.
  3. Codes are inadequate, as they are not capable of dealing with all perspective cases.
  4. It raises difficulties of interpretation and give rise to several meanings.

Kinds of codification

1. Creative Code

A code is creative which makes a law for the first time without any reference to any other law. It is law making by legislation.

2. Consolidating  Code

It is that kind of code which combines the whole law i.e. statutory, customary and precedent on particular subject and declares it. It is done for the purpose to simplify the law, e.g. Pre-emption act for Muslim Law.

3. Combine Code

A code may be both creative and consolidating. It may make new law as well as consolidate the existing law on a particular subject e.g. the right to vote for a tribal man.


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