Nullum tempus occurrit regi

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Nullum tempus occurrit regi ("no time runs against the king"), sometimes abbreviated nullum tempus, is a common law doctrine originally expressed by Bracton in his De legibus et consuetudinibus Angliae in the 1250s. It states that the crown is not subject to statutes of limitations.[1] This means that the crown can proceed with actions that would be barred if brought by an individual due to the passage of time. The doctrine is still in force in common law systems today. In republics, it is often referred to as "nullum tempus occurrit reipublicae".[2]


  1. ^ Mack, Joseph (2006-04-01). "Nullum tempus: governmental immunity to statutes of limitation, laches, and statutes of repose.". Defense Counsel Journal. Retrieved 2008-08-21. 
  2. ^ Cushman,, Robert F; G. Christian Hedemann (1995). Architect and Engineer Liability. Aspen Publishers Online. p. 351. ISBN 0-7355-0666-3. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Donald W. Sutherland, Quo Warranto Proceedings in the Reign of Edward I, 1278-1294 (Oxford; Clarendon Press, 1963)
  • [1] Description of the varying Nullum Tempus Occurit Regi doctrine among American States