Robyn Carroll, ‘When “Sorry” is the Hardest Word to Say, How Might Apology Legislation Assist?’

Apology legislation refers generally to statutory provisions that remove legal disincentives to offering an apology in the context of civil disputes. The legislation clarifies and, in many cases, alters what would otherwise be the legal consequences of an apology, principally by reforming the law of evidence. The aim of apology legislation, in general terms, is to encourage apologies by removing legal disincentives to apologising. Other aims are to promote the settlement and resolution of disputes and to reduce litigation. Apology legislation has been enacted in many US states, each state and territory in Australia, in England and Wales, in most Canadian provinces and territories and has been considered in Scotland. As apology legislation is being considered by the Department of Justice, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government this article, which suggests a number of matters that need to be considered when introducing apology legislation to assist in the resolution of legal disputes, is timely.

Carroll, Robyn, When ‘Sorry’ is the Hardest Word to Say, How Might Apology Legislation Assist? (2014). (2014) 44(2) Hong Kong Law Journal 491; UWA Faculty of Law Research Paper 2014-43.

First posted 2014-10-22 06:30:37

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