Business of the House motions

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25.36Business of the House motions, which are tabled in the name of the Leader of the House,1 are used to enable the House to regulate proceedings of which notice has been given in House of Lords Business. They are generally of two types. The first type is to vary or suspend the application of standing orders, for which under the terms of Standing Order No 84 notice is required except in an emergency. Suspension of Standing Order Nos 40 and 46 is commonly agreed to, particularly when pressure of business increases before a recess or prorogation, to enable the Government to arrange the order of business and to take more than one stage of a bill at a sitting.

The second main type of business of the House motion is to apply time limits to debates.

Business of the House motions may be used for other purposes from time to time.2

Business of the House motions are disposed of before other notices relating to public business (Standing Order No 38(3)). They can be amended.3


  1. 1. Exceptionally, a business of the House motion has been tabled by the Leader of the Opposition, HL Deb (1995–96) 569, cc 503–12.
  2. 2. For example to disapply the rule relating to the tabling of amendments at third reading which have been fully discussed and decided at an earlier stage, Defamation Bill 1996, HL Deb (1995–96) 571, cc 1404–6; see also minutes of proceedings of 4 April 2019.
  3. 3. See minutes of proceedings of 4 April 2019.