House of CommonsShort guide to procedure and practice

Deregulation orders

Under the Deregulation and Contracting Out Act 1994, the Government may make an Order (instead of having to obtain an Act) to amend or repeal provisions in primary legislation which are considered to impose a burden on business or others and which could be repealed or amended without removing any necessary protection.

Such Orders follow a special procedure. The Deregulation Committees in each House scrutinise proposed Orders twice - when first proposed and when subsequently laid in draft - and report each time on whether the proposed Order should proceed.

The draft Order requires approval by each House. In the Commons the procedure depends on what happened in Committee:

    i. Committee approves without division: Question put in House without debate.

    ii. Committee approves with division: Debate in House for up to 1½ hours.

    iii. Committee rejects: Motion in House to disagree with Committee's report, debated for up to 3 hours; if agreed, question then put forthwith on draft Order.

Lists of deregulation proposals currently before the House are published each Wednesday and are available from the Vote Office.

Contact: Clerk of the Deregulation Committee, in December 2830, from January 0447.

Further information: Information sheet (available from the Committee); Factsheet No.14, 'Statutory instruments and deregulation orders'.


© Parliamentary copyright 2001
Prepared 14 February 2001