In the United Kingdom, Canada and New Zealand the major opposition party and specifically its shadow cabinet is called His or Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition. The adjective "loyal" is used because, while the role of the opposition is to oppose Her Majesty's Government, it does not dispute the sovereign's right to the throne and therefore the legitimacy of the government. However, in other countries that use the Westminster system, the opposition is known simply as The Parliamentary Opposition.
Some parliamentary parties, notably the Australian Labor Party, elect all the members of their shadow cabinets in a party room ballot, with the Leader of the Opposition then allocating portfolios to the Shadow Ministers. In other parliamentary parties, the membership and composition of the Shadow Cabinet is generally determined solely by the Leader of the Opposition.
In many jurisdictions, third parties (which are neither participant in the government nor in the official opposition) may also form their own parliamentary front benches of spokespersons; however, parliamentary standing orders on the right of parties to speak often dictate that it can only be granted to a party or group if a minimum number of members can be recorded by the party. In Ireland, for example, technical groups are often formed by third parties and independent TDs in the Dáil Éireann in order to increase the members' right to speak against larger parties which can afford the right to speak as Front Benches in Government or Opposition.
Use outside English-speaking countries
While the practice of parliamentary shadow cabinets or frontbenches is not widespread in Germany, party leaders have often formed boards of experts and advisors ("teams of experts", or Kompetenzteam, in CDU/CSU and SPD parlance; alternate "top team", or Spitzenteam, in Alliance '90/The Greens parlance).