Order in which bill is considered

28.93Unless the committee otherwise orders, the text of a bill is considered in committee in the following order:

  1. Clauses
  2. New clauses
  3. Schedules
  4. New schedules
  5. Preamble (if any)1
  6. Title (if amendment thereto is required).

It is frequently proposed that a bill should be considered in a different order, most commonly to enable schedules to be considered directly after the clauses to which they are related.2 Changes in the order in which a government bill is considered in committee are usually contained in a programme order (in respect of a bill in Committee of the whole House) or, for public bill committees, in a resolution of that committee.3 In committees on bills not subject to a programme order, an ‘order of consideration’ motion may be moved: under Standing Order No 32(4) such motions are subject to the Chair's power of selection. They are normally (but not invariably4 ) selected only if moved by the Member in charge of the bill. They may be moved at any stage during proceedings on the bill, but usually constitute the first business after the short title has been read; notice is customarily given, but is not a requirement.5 It is also possible to move a motion in committee to postpone the consideration of clauses (see para 28.96 below).


  1. 1. SO No 67. See also para 28.118.
  2. 2. For example, Homelessness Reduction Bill, Public Bill Committee, HC Deb (23 November 2016) 617, c 4; Assaults on Emergency Workers (Offences) Bill, Public Bill Committee, HC Deb (15 November 2017) 631, c 3.
  3. 3. See, for example, European Union (Withdrawal) Bill, Votes and Proceedings, 11 September 2017; Data Protection Bill [Lords], Public Bill Committee Proceedings, 13 March 2018. See also para 39.22.
  4. 4. For example, First Scottish Stg Co, Proceedings (1993–94), Local Government etc (Scotland) Bill, p 43.
  5. 5. Stg Co E, Proceedings (1987–88), Local Government Finance Bill, p 9.