The Crown, Ministers and Officials: Legal Status and Liability

William Wade

in The Nature of the Crown

Published in print June 1999 | ISBN: 9780198262732
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682407 | DOI:
The Crown, Ministers and Officials: Legal Status and Liability

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This chapter examines the legal nature and position of the Crown and its ministers and law officers in Great Britain. The Crown has always been immune from legal process at common law but this immunity does not extend to ministers and Crown officers, who were liable personally in law for anything unlawful that they did. Until twenty or thirty years ago, it was accepted doctrine that, although the courts had jurisdiction to decide what was the nature and the limits of the prerogative powers of the Crown, the exercise of discretion within those limits was something that no court could question.

Keywords: government; Crown officers; legal immunity; prerogative power

Chapter.  4460 words. 

Subjects: Constitutional and Administrative Law

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