In corporate law there is something called the veil of incorporation that suggests there is a difference between a corporate body and its shareholders. Okay – this is a useful and important legal fiction. But … it has its limitations:
The health, economic and political fallout from the spike in Victorian COVID-19 cases are immense. The legal fallout could be just as significant. The hotel quarantine fiasco is likely to lead to the largest class action in Australian history, one that effectively could bankrupt the state. It threatens to render the Robodebt case to being a footnote in litigation textbooks.
Given the glaring errors made by the Victorian government that have resulted in the state experiencing a second, deadlier coronavirus wave and the intense suffering that this has inflicted on many Victorians, it is almost inevitable that a negligence action will be launched.
It is all very well and good suing the state of Victoria. I encourage people to do so.
But … Individual decision makers are not likely to be sued. This is the problem – the biggest victims of Victorian government incompetence are Victorians.
I think that a future Victorian government should allow individual decision makers to be sued for the decisions that they have made. Individuals should not be allowed to shelter behind sovereign immunity when their decisions have been clearly incompetent.