Religious Confession Privilege and the Common Law

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Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, Apr 11, 2011 - Political Science - 395 pages
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Does religious confession privilege exist at common law? Most evidence law texts answer no . This analysis shows that most of the cases relied upon for the no religious confession privilege conclusion are not authority for that conclusion. The origin of the privilege in the canon law in the first millennium AD is traced and its reception into common law is documented. Proof that religious confession privilege continues unbroken at common law through to the present day is of obvious importance in jurisdictions where there is no relevant statute. A correct understanding of the common law extant before statutes were passed will influence whether those statutes are broadly or narrowly interpreted. The book also brings the reader up to date on the state of religious confession privilege in the United States, Canada, England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
 

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Contents

Introduction
1
Review of Religious Confession Privilege in Early Evidence Texts
13
Religious Confession Privilege in Historical Context
29
Religious Confession and Privilege in Canon Law
59
Religious Confession Privilege at Common Law From the Seventeenth to the Twentieth Century
89
Religious Communications Privilege at Common Law
123
Theories About the Extinction of Religious Confession Privilege
155
Religious Confession Privilege at Common Law in Australia
181
Religious Confession Privilege in the United States
253
Chapter Ten Religious Confession Privilege in Canada and New Zealand
283
Chapter Eleven Religious Confession Privilege in South Africa
301
Chapter Twelve Policy Should There Be a Religious Confession Privilege?
315
Conclusion
357
Bibliography
379
Index
389
Copyright

Religious Confession Privilege at Common Law in the United Kingdom and Ireland
217

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About the author (2011)

A. Keith Thompson, LLB (Hons) (1981); M Jur (1993), University of Auckland, PhD (2007) in Law, Murdoch University, worked as Area Legal Counsel in the Pacific for the LDS Church from 1991 until 2009 following a career in commercial law as a partner in an Auckland law firm. He now works as Area Legal Counsel for the LDS Church for Africa from offices in Ghana.

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