Previous

Contents page 1-4 Last page

A

BILL

[AS AMENDED IN PUBLIC BILL COMMITTEE]

TO

Make provision for resignation from the House of Lords; and to make
provision for the expulsion of Members of the House of Lords in specified
circumstances.

Be it enacted by the Queen’s most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and
consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present
Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

1 Resignation

(1) A member of the House of Lords who is a peer may retire or otherwise resign
as a member of the House of Lords by giving notice in writing to the Clerk of
the Parliaments.

(2) 5The notice must—

(a) specify a date from which the resignation is to take effect, and

(b) be signed by the peer and by a witness.

(3) At the beginning of that date the peer ceases to be a member of the House of
Lords.

(4) 10Resignation may not be rescinded.

2 Non-attendance

(1) A member of the House of Lords who is a peer and does not attend the House
of Lords during a Session ceases to be a member of the House at the beginning
of the following Session.

(2) 15A peer “does not attend the House of Lords during a Session” if, and only if,
the Lord Speaker certifies that the peer—

(a) at no time during the Session attended the House, having regard to
attendance records kept by officials of the House, and

House of Lords Reform (No. 2) BillPage 2

(b) did not have leave of absence in respect of the Session, in accordance
with Standing Orders of the House.

(3) Subsection (1) does not apply to a peer in respect of attendance during a
Session if—

(a) 5the peer was disqualified from sitting or voting in the House, or
suspended from its service, for the whole of the Session, or

(b) the House resolves that subsection (1) should not apply to the peer by
reason of special circumstances.

(4) Subsection (1) does not apply in respect of attendance during a Session that is
10less than six months long.

(5) In this section a reference to attendance is a reference to attending the
proceedings of the House (including the proceedings of a Committee of the
House).

(6) This section applies in respect of attendance during the first Session to begin
15after its coming into force and subsequent Sessions.

3 Conviction of serious offence

(1) A member of the House of Lords who is convicted of a serious offence ceases
to be a member of the House of Lords.

(2) A person “is convicted of a serious offence” if, and only if, the Lord Speaker
20certifies that the person, while a member of the House of Lords, has been—

(a) convicted of a criminal offence, and

(b) sentenced or ordered to be imprisoned or detained indefinitely or for
more than one year.

(3) It is irrelevant for the purposes of subsection (2)—

(a) 25whether the offence is committed at a time when the person is a
member of the House of Lords;

(b) whether any of the offence, conviction, sentence, order, imprisonment
or detention occurs in the United Kingdom or elsewhere; (but see
subsection (9)).

(4) 30The reference in subsection (2) to an offence is only to an offence committed on
or after the day on which this section comes into force.

(5) The reference in subsection (2) to a person being sentenced or ordered to be
imprisoned or detained indefinitely or for more than one year does not include
such a sentence or order where the sentence or order is suspended.

(6) 35A certificate under subsection (2) takes effect when it is issued.

(7) If a person who has ceased to be a member of the House of Lords in accordance
with this section is successful on appeal—

(a) the Lord Speaker must issue a further certificate to that effect, and

(b) on the issue of that certificate, the original certificate under subsection
40(2) shall be treated for the purposes of this Act as never having had
effect.

(8) A person who has ceased to be a member of the House of Lords in accordance
with this section “is successful on appeal” if, and only if, the Lord Speaker
certifies that—

House of Lords Reform (No. 2) BillPage 3

(a) the conviction certified under subsection (2)(a) has been quashed, or

(b) the sentence or order certified under subsection (2)(b) has been—

(i) varied so that it is no longer a sentence or order that the person
be imprisoned or detained indefinitely or for more than one
5year within the meaning of subsection (2)(b), or

(ii) replaced with another sentence or order that is not a sentence or
order that the person be so imprisoned or detained.

(9) The Lord Speaker shall not issue a certificate under subsection (2) in respect of
a conviction outside the United Kingdom if the House of Lords resolves that
10subsection (1) should not apply by reason of special circumstances.

4 Effect of ceasing to be a member

(1) This section applies where a person ceases to be a member of the House of
Lords in accordance with this Act.

(2) The person becomes disqualified from attending the proceedings of the House
15of Lords (including the proceedings of a Committee of the House).

(3) Accordingly, the person shall not be entitled to receive a writ to attend the
House (whether under section 1 of the Life Peerages Act 1958, by virtue of the
dignity conferred by virtue of appointment as a Lord of Appeal in Ordinary,
by virtue of a hereditary peerage or as a Lord Spiritual) and may not attend the
20House in pursuance of a writ already received.

(4) If the person is a hereditary peer who is excepted from section 1 of the House
of Lords Act 1999 by virtue of section 2 of that Act, the person ceases to be
excepted from section 1 of that Act (and accordingly section 3 of that Act
applies (removal of disqualification on voting in parliamentary elections or
25being an MP)).

(5) If the person is a peer other than a hereditary peer, the person is not, by virtue
of that peerage, disqualified for—

(a) voting at elections to the House of Commons, or

(b) being, or being elected as, a member of that House.

(6) 30In relation to a peer who ceases to be a member of the House of Lords in
accordance with this Act, any reference in section 1(3) or (4)(b) of the
Representation of the People Act 1985 to a register of parliamentary electors is
to be read as including—

(a) any register of local government electors in Great Britain, and

(b) 35any register of local electors in Northern Ireland,

which was required to be published on any date before the date on which the
peer ceased to be a member.

(7) The Standing Orders of the House required by section 2(4) of the House of
Lords Act 1999 (filling of vacancies) must make provision requiring the
40holding of a by-election to fill any vacancy which arises under this Act among
the people excepted from section 1 of that Act in consequence of an election.

(8) Subject to section 3(7), a person who ceases to be a member of the House of
Lords in accordance with this Act may not subsequently become a member of
that House.

House of Lords Reform (No. 2) BillPage 4

5 Certificate of Lord Speaker

(1) A certificate of the Lord Speaker under this Act shall be conclusive for all
purposes.

(2) A certificate may be issued on the Lord Speaker’s own initiative.

6 5Interpretation

(1) For the purposes of this Act a person is a member of the House of Lords if the
person is entitled to receive writs of summons to attend that House.

(2) In determining whether a person is so entitled, ignore—

(a) section 2 of the Forfeiture Act 1870 (disqualification on conviction of
10treason);

(b) sections 426A and 427 of the Insolvency Act 1986 (disqualification on
insolvency);

(c) regulation 4 of the European Parliament (House of Lords
Disqualification) Regulations 2008 (S.I. 2008/1647S.I. 2008/1647) (disqualification
15where MEP).

(3) In this Act “peer” includes a person upon whom a dignity has been conferred
by virtue of appointment as a Lord of Appeal in Ordinary.

7 Short title, commencement and extent

(1) This Act may be cited as the House of Lords Reform Act 2014.

(2) 20Sections 1 and 2 of this Act shall come into force at the end of the period of three
months beginning with the day on which this Act is passed.

(3) The remaining provisions of this Act shall come into force on the day on which
this Act is passed.

(4) This Act extends to England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Previous

Contents page 1-4 Last page