Quo Warranto Act, 1798


from the 1st day of Easter term, 1798, defendants to informations, in the nature of quo warranto, may plead having undertaken or executed office or franchise 6 years before; to be computed from time of admission or swearing;

such plea may be singly pleaded, or otherwise;

if issue be found for defendant, be shall have judgment and costs.

WHEREAS it would tend greatly to secure the freedom of election, and the quiet, tranquillity and good order of cities, boroughs, and towns-corporate if a certain reasonable limitation of time, were by law established beyond which no member or officer of any city, borough, or town-corporate, should be disturbed in the enjoyment or exercise of his office or franchise: be it therefore enacted by the King's most excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the lords spiritual and temporal, and commons in parliament assembled, That after the first day of Easter term, in the year one thousand seven hundred and ninety-eight, it shall and may be lawful for the defendant or defendants to any information, in the nature of a quo warranto, for the exercise of any office or franchise, in any city, borough, or town-corporate, whether exhibited with leave of the court, or by his Majesty's attorney-general, or other officer of the crown, on behalf of his Majesty, by virtue of any royal prerogative, or otherwise, and every of them severally and respectively to plead that he or they had first actually taken upon themselves, or held, or executed the office or franchise, which is the subject of such information six years or more before the exhibiting of such information, such six years to be reckoned and computed from the day on which such defendant or defendants so pleading, shall have been actually admitted and sworn into such office or franchise; which plea shall or may be pleaded either singly, or together with and besides such plea as he or they might have lawfully pleaded before the passing of this act, or such several pleas as the court on motion shall allow; and if upon the trial of such information, the issue joined upon such plea shall be found for the defendant or defendants, or any of them, he or they shall be entitled to judgment, and to such and the like costs, as he or they would by law have been entitled to, if a verdict and judgment had been given for him or them upon the merits of his or their title.