Act of indemnity


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a statute passed for the protection of those who have committed some illegal act subjecting them to penalties.
(Law) an act or law passed in order to relieve persons, especially in an official station, from some penalty to which they are liable in consequence of acting illegally, or, in case of ministers, in consequence of exceeding the limits of their strict constitutional powers. These acts also sometimes provide compensation for losses or damage, either incurred in the service of the government, or resulting from some public measure.

See also: Act, Indemnity

Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, published 1913 by G. & C. Merriam Co.
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That these ministers, having all employments at their disposal, preserve themselves in power, by bribing the majority of a senate or great council; and at last, by an expedient, called an act of indemnity" (whereof I described the nature to him), "they secure themselves from after-reckonings, and retire from the public laden with the spoils of the nation.
This point can be elaborated by considering Dicey's discussion not of a prospective procedural protection of officials against actions on the basis of alleged illegalities, but of the retrospective procedural protection provided by an "Act of Indemnity".
Argyll's friends successfully persuaded Charles to absolve him for his activities before 1651, under the Act of Indemnity for Scotland.