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Samoa Law Reform Commission

Komisi o le Toefuataiga o Tulafono a Samoa



In the year 1997, Samoa’s Ministry of Justice and Courts’ Administration (MJCA) conducted the Institutional Strengthening Project, which highlighted the need for a law reform office for Samoa. The First Law Reform Commission Bill was then developed in 2001 to establish a law reform office for the sole purpose of reviewing and reforming the laws of Samoa. In 2002, the Law Reform Commission Act 2002 was passed, though never implemented. Six years later, this Act was revised and became the Law Reform Commission Act 2008 (“LRC Act 2008”), which established the Samoa Law Reform Commission (“SLRC”) as a statutory body operated under the Office of the Attorney General (“OAG”). 2011 saw the SLRC separated from the OAG. The SLRC is currently housed inside the Government Building at Matagialalua, whereas the OAG sits inside the TATTE Building. The SLRC celebrated 10 years’ anniversary in the year 2018. During this year, SLRC reviewed its LRC Act 2008, from which amendments resulted and were passed by Parliament in 2019.


SLRC’s purpose as per section 4 of the Law Reform Commission Act 2008 is to facilitate the review reform and development of the laws of Samoa to:

  • Promote Samoan custom and traditions;
  • Enhance social, cultural, economic & commercial development of Samoa; and
  • Ensure that the laws of Samoa are kept in modern state which meets the needs of Government and the community.


The SLRC has the following powers under section 7 of the LRC Act 2008:

  1. To conduct studies, research and reviews to inform law reform projects;
  2. To request and receive information from government Ministries of agencies relating to any review as is appropriate
  3. To conduct public consultations and seek comments from public on its law reform projects; and
  4. To hire or obtain the services of suitably qualified persons to assist with its work.


SLRC is authorised to perform the following core functions:

  1. To research and analyse areas of law considered to be
    in need of reform in accordance with references:
    (i) made to it by the Prime Minister, Cabinet or
    the Attorney General; or
    (ii) selfinitiated by the Commission;
  2. To consult with and advise the public about its work;
  3. To promote awareness of the laws of Samoa;
  4. To provide advice to Government Ministries and agencies on reviews of the law conducted by those Ministries and agencies; and
  5. To provide annual reporting to Legislative Assembly.

Other functions of the SLRC is:

  1. To draft Bills to reflect the recommendation in Final Reports;
  2. To participate in Working Groups, Partnerships, Committees or Boards (led by other Ministries/Agencies); and
  3. To provide corporate support services.
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