An appointment of an agent for an illegal purpose is void.
If the agent is appointed for an illegal purpose, the appointment is void. Obviously any agency is illegal which is for the purpose of a commission of a crime.10 In such a case whatever the pretense, all are principals. So an attempted agency to procure the commission of a tort would make all liable as joint tort feasors.
9. Lyons v. Kent, 45 Ala. 656.
Any agency whose tendency is to induce the agent to break faith, or to corrupt the public service, is void, although no actual harm results. It is the tendency which makes it void. Thus, for illustration, agents appointed for lobbying purposes,11 marriage brokage contracts,12 are illegal and void.
Some acts are by public policy made inherently personal and therefore cannot be delegated.
(a) Official duties for whose performance the person has been chosen for his personal qualifications.
Any duty for the performance of which a particular person has been chosen manifestly cannot be delegated. Thus the discretionary and judicial duties of public officers, cannot be delegated,13 though merely ministerial acts may be performed by others. Thus, directors of corporations, or trustees, cannot pass on to others the powers which they have personally been chosen to exercise. Directors cannot attend meetings by proxy; though stockholders may.14
10. Pearce v. Foote, 113 111. 228.
11. Mills v. Mills, 40 N. Y. 543.
12. Hellen v. Anderson, 83 111. Ap. 506.
13. Birdsall v. Clark, 73 N. Y. 73.
14. See subject corporations in this series.
(b) Duties whose delegation would involve evasion of personal obligations imposed by law, encourage corruption, etc.
The power of the citizen to vote at public elections is an example of acts not delegable for the reason stated.
Duties of personal service for whom one has been selected by contract cannot be delegated.
As a person may choose with whom he will contract, and the relationship of contracting parties is in all respects a highly personal one, obviously a party to a contract cannot delegate his personal obligations thereunder without the consent of the other contracting party. This subject is discussed hereafter.