Has the Labour Party introduced limited liability for its senior officials since 2008?

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The Politicus
Apr 20, 2020 10:22 AM 0 Answers
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On Sunday, April 19th, the Jewish Chronicle posted an article which stated that, due to lawsuits relating to breach of confidence, invasion of privacy, and libel claims as a result of the leaked antisemitism report, (related question) the Labour party could face a bill of up to £8 million:

Labour could be bankrupted by lawsuits after an antisemitism report
compiled by allies of former party leader Jeremy Cobyn (sic) was
leaked to the public.

[...]

Sources close to those complainants say more than 30 individuals may
sue the party over breach of privacy and for putting their safety at
risk.

Labour could face a legal bill as high as £8 million over the leak,
which could bankrupt the party, according to the sources.

[...]

Mark Lewis of law firm Patron Law, who is representing 20 of the
people affected, said: “If this bankrupts the Labour Party or
individuals, so be it. Actions have consequences.

This reminded me of a situation that occurred in 2008, when the Guardian reported that due to the party's large amount of debt, party officials could become personally liable for the sum:

Senior officials in the Labour party, including Gordon Brown, could
become personally liable for millions of pounds in debt unless new
donors can be found within weeks, the Guardian has learned.

[...]

The advice from City solicitors Slaughter and May said unequivocally
that leading party officials and members of the NEC would be " jointly
and severally" responsible for the party's debt.

The reason is that the Labour party constitution is framed like a
local club or society, and has no provision for limiting the liability
of its officials or managers.

[...]

The Labour party is said to be investigating whether it can change its
status to a limited liability company to protect its officials and NEC
members - but such a move could be open to legal challenge until it
clears its debts.

Has any such change of status taken place, either by amending the Party's constitution or through some other method?

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  • April 20, 2020