Council of State (Portugal)

The Council of State (Portuguese: Conselho de Estado, IPA: [kõˈsɐʎu ðɨ (ɨ)ʃˈtaðu]) is a body established by the Portuguese Constitution to advise the President of the Republic in the exercise of many of his or her discretionary powers.[1][2][3]

Although there are notices about the existence of a Council of State in Portugal before 1385, the first permanent regiment for its functioning was established by King Sebastian through his charter of 8 September 1569.

The Council of State continued to exist after the establishment of the Constitutional Monarchy in 1821. It was foreseen in the Portuguese Constitutions of 1822, 1826 and 1838.

After the 5 October 1910 revolution that established the Republic in Portugal, the Council of State was abolished, not being foreseen in the Constitution of 1911.

The Council of State was reestablished by the Constitution of 1933. It was again not foreseen by the Constitution of 1976. However, it was reestablished in 1984, following the revision of the Constitution of 1982.

Besides summoning and advising the President whenever asked to do so by him/her, according to the Constitution the Council must be summoned by the President before:[1]

According to article 142 of the Constitution, the Council is composed of the following members:[1][2]

Members of the Council are immune from prosecution: they may not be brought before a court of law without prior agreement of the Council to lift their immunity or they are no longer serving on the Council.