8 British Laws the Queen Doesn’t Have to Follow
Wouldn't it be nice to drive as fast (or as slow) as you pleased? Her Majesty can!
She Doesn’t Need a Passport
Be jealous: When the Queen heads out on any one of her numerous tours, she needn’t fret over misplacing her passport. In Britain—as well as in Canada—each passport is issued in the Queen’s name. Consequently, she herself doesn’t need to carry one.
She Doesn’t Need to Pay Taxes (But She Does Anyway)
While some of Britain’s tax money does go toward maintaining the Queen’s lifestyle, she isn’t legally obliged to pay them herself. Honourably, she does anyway. Since 1992, the Queen has voluntarily paid income and capital gains tax.
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She Doesn’t Need to Approve Freedom of Information Requests
Freedom of Information requests are often used by the press, as well as the public, to find out information about public figures. However, the Queen, Prince Philip, their children and grandchildren are exempt, meaning they never have to hand over anything.
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She Doesn’t Need a License
Should the Queen decide to head out on a joyride, she doesn’t need to stop by the driver’s test centre first. Queen Elizabeth isn’t required to carry a license, or to pass a driver’s test. Fortunately for everyone else on the road, the monarch was a truck driver for the military during World War II, and is perfectly capable of taking the wheel.
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She Doesn’t Need to Drive the Speed Limit
Whether the Queen is in the driver’s seat or just along for the ride, her royal authority allows her to go as fast—or as slow—as she pleases. “The law currently states that speed limits do not apply to any motor vehicle being used for police, fire and rescue authority, ambulance or Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) purposes, if observing the speed limit would be likely to hinder the use of the vehicle for the purpose for which it is being used on that occasion,” a representative from the Department for Transport told The Sun. “The PM and royal family are driven by the police so the driver would be exempt because the police have an exemption in law.”
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She’s Immune to Prosecution
If you catch the Queen breaking a law that isn’t on this list, don’t expect much to come of it. It is legally impossible to sue or prosecute the Queen.
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She Can Eat Swan
That’s not to say the Queen has actually ever dined on a swan. But if she wanted to, she could—and no one else in Britain would be legally allowed to join her.
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She Can Own All the Dolphins
Because of a bizarre rule that dates back to the 1300s, the reigning monarch technically owns all the sturgeons, whales and dolphins in the waters around the U.K. The Queen also owns all the swans in the Thames!
Check out 20+ more fascinating facts about Queen Elizabeth.