All primary legislation start life as Bills which are proposals for legislation: those applicable to the general body of citizens are called Public Bills and those promoted by local authorities and private bodies or individuals for their own purposes are called Private Bills. Private Bills are very rare and are dealt with under separate procedures.
Bills can be introduced in either the Dáil or Seanad and there are five stages in considering a Bill. The second and third stages are considered the most important as they offer the fullest opportunities to Members to discuss and amend the contents of the Bill.
Once a Bill has been passed by both Houses, the Taoiseach presents a vellum copy of the Bill, prepared in the Office of the Houses of the Oireachtas to the President for signature and promulgation as a law. The signed text is then enrolled for record in the Office of the Registrar of the Supreme Court.
(The above text is printed courtesy of the Houses of the Oireachtas)
Secondary legislation, in the form of Statutory Instruments, is governed by the Statutory Instruments Act 1947. There are five main types of statutory instrument orders, regulations, rules, bye-laws and schemes. Secondary legislation was issued in the form of Statutory Rules and Orders between 1922 and 1947.
Statutory Instruments have a wide variety of functions. They are not enacted by the Oireachtas but allow persons or bodies to whom legislative power has been delegated by statute to legislate in relation to detailed day-to-day matters arising from the operation of the relevant primary legislation. Statutory instruments are used, for example, to implement European Council Directives, designate the days on which particular District Courts sit and delegate the powers of Ministers.
Specified Government Ministers and other agencies and bodies are authorised to make Statutory Instruments and several hundred instruments are made annually
The acts of the Oireachtas passed in the year ..
Classmark: Ireland 011
From 1927 onwards. These are arranged by year and are not amended.
Irish Current law monthly digest
Classmark: Ireland 200 I65
From 1994- onwards. Contains statutes as originally enacted with annotations.
Classmark: Ireland 090
From 1948 onwards Arranged by broad subject these have summaries of statutory intruments with some major instruments being reprinted in full.
Classmark: Ireland 510 L416d/102 1
Law Reform Commission of Ireland list of current legislation
Legislation is often easier found online - for which see links below - but note the statement on the Irish Statute Book site
"The official version of the Acts of the Oireachtas and Statutory Instruments remains the printed version published by Government Publications."
To find out what hard copy resources the Law Bod has, please consult the box to the right.