41.7The Chair is elected from among the Members1 appointed to serve on the committee by either House. In accordance with the principle indicated above that an instruction may be given to a joint committee only with the concurrence of both Houses, Commons Standing Order No 122A providing for term limits for Chairs of Commons select committees does not apply.

Generally, unless otherwise agreed, the procedure of a joint committee follows the procedure of select committees of the Lords, regardless of to which House the Chair belongs. For example, the practice of the House of Lords on the use of the Chair's vote, and the Lords method of deciding the question if the votes are equal (see paras 25.88, 40.27 ), are followed by a joint committee.2 However, in the case of the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards3 and the Joint Committee on Tax Law Rewrite Bills, the Standing Order of the House of Commons and the order of reference of the House of Lords have provided for Commons procedure to be followed.4


  1. It is the practice in the Lords to include in their order of reference a specific power to agree with the Commons committee on the appointment of a Chair – see for example Joint Committee on Palace of Westminster (LJ (2015–16) 236). In the case of the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards, a Chair was appointed directly by the Commons in its order of establishment, and the order in the Lords provided that ‘they concur with the Commons that the Chairman of the Commission be appointed by the House of Commons’, CJ (2012–13) 180, LJ (2012–13) 233.
  2. Joint Committees on Channel Tunnel, Proceedings, Session 1883, HC 248, p xliv; on Railway Rates, etc, Provisional Order Bill, Proceedings, Session 1890–91, HC 394, p xxv; Joint Committee on Privacy and Injunctions, Session 2010–12, HC 1443, HL 273.
  3. CJ (2012–13) 180 (para (6)), LJ (2012–13) 233 (para (4)).
  4. SO No 152C(5) [HC]; for a fuller discussion of the procedures of this committee, see Erskine May (24th edn, 2011), p 918.