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Law as Last Resort : Prosecution Decision-Making in A Regulating Agency - Keith Hawkins

Law as Last Resort

Prosecution Decision-Making in A Regulating Agency

Hardcover Published: 1st February 2003
ISBN: 9780199243884
Number Of Pages: 508

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This is a book about the life of the legal system. Its concern is legal decision-making, its focus the handling of prosecution cases in a regulatory agency. In almost all legal disputing formalities are employed as a last resort for a small proportion of cases. Case attrition is a constant feature in the legal system, whether criminal or civil, since extensive pre-trial negotiations search for solutions to problems that avoid the costs, risks, and delays of trial. This book analyzes the attrition of cases by studying decisions made about their creation, handling, disposal, and prosecution. Exploring these issues asks questions about the public face of law, the meaning of formal processes, and their impact on pre-trial legal manoeuvring. To prosecute is to enforce the law in both a public and a consequential way. In enforcing regulation prosecution visibly takes sides in the fundamental dilemma of regulatory control about how far law should justifiably intervene in business. Using extensive data collected over a fifteen-year period, and with privileged access to the UK Health and Safety Executive, the book presents a multi-level analysis of decisions about prosecution policy and individual cases in a variety of inspectorates.

`This is an excellent "interpretive" socio-legal study of the prosecutorial decision-making by the officers in the British Health and Safety Executive ... the book does draw conclusions about how legal officials actually make decisions, and these insights will be of great interest to policy makers.' Regulation at Work

Abbreviations Part I: Formalities 1: Themes, Perspectives, Questions 2: Organizing Ideas 3: Pre-Trial Processes Part II: Surround 4: Decision-Making Environments Part III: Field 5: Formal Structure and Practice 6: Prosecution Policy 7: Symbols and Images Part IV: Frame 8: Enforcers' Theories of Compliance and Punishment 9: The Instrumental Frame: Will Prosecution Have an Impact? 10: The Organizational Frame: Prosecuting as Advertising 11: The Symbolic Frame: The Social Construction of Blame 12: The Legal Frame: Can a Case be Made? Part V: Reflection 13: On Prosecution, Legal Decision-Making, and Law Appendix: Research Methods and Data Sources References Index of Authors Index of Subjects

ISBN: 9780199243884
ISBN-10: 0199243883
Series: Oxford Socio-Legal Studies
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 508
Published: 1st February 2003
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 22.3 x 14.5  x 3.1
Weight (kg): 0.46