LRC Reports

Civil Litigation in the Public Interest (1980)

Keywords: civil; litigation; procedure; appeal; public interest; advocacy; standing; locus standi; ratepayer; class action; nuisance; Attorney General; relator; fiat; ultra vires; public right; amicus curiae; remedy

Traditionally at common law private individuals did not have the right to commence proceedings in the public interest, asking the courts to protect the public at large against an invasion of its rights. This is because the law has historically assigned the role of guardian of the public interest to the attorney general. This project examines whether this position needs updating, particularly by focussing on the rule of law that the attorney general is a necessary party to any civil proceeding brought in respect of a violation or an apprehended violation of a public right.

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