Changing the Rules of Succession to the Throne
27 Pages Posted: 13 Oct 2011
Date Written: October 12, 2011
The British Government is considering changing the rules of succession to the Crown to remove discrimination against women and Catholics. This article discusses the consequences of this proposal for the 'Realms', being the other fifteen countries of which the Queen is Sovereign. It discusses the relevance of the Statute of Westminster and whether parliamentary assent of the Realms is required. It also analyses the impact of such a change on a number of Realms, including Australia, New Zealand and Canada. It considers whether the British changes would automatically affect who becomes Sovereign in these Realms, or whether each Realm would have to change its own laws. In those Realms that are federations, consideration is also given to the source of constitutional power to make such legislative changes.
Keywords: succession to throne, Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Tuvalu, Antigua, Statute of Westminster, Crown, Queen, discrimination, Catholics, Commonwealth of Nations, abdication, Realms, federations, divisibility of Crown
JEL Classification: K10, K30
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation