Deposit of petitions for bills

43.1For every private bill—in whichever House it is eventually presented—a petition, signed by the parties (or some of them) who are promoters for the bill, must be deposited in the Private Bill Office of the House of Commons on or before 27 November, with a printed copy of the proposed bill annexed. A printed copy of every such bill must also be deposited, on or before the same date, in the Office of the Clerk of the Parliaments, House of Lords.1 Attached to each bill must be a memorandum describing the bill generally and the effect of its clauses. Standing Order 39 provides for bills to be deposited by 4 December in certain government departments.2 For circumstances in which the deposit of a petition for a late bill may be authorised, see para 43.14.


  1. 1. Standing Orders 2, 2A (HC); Standing Orders 2 and 38 (HL). Under Standing Order 194A (HC) every petition for a private bill, together with the copy of the proposed bill annexed thereto, is open to inspection by all parties. This requirement is normally met by the publication of petitions and bills on the Parliament website.
  2. 2. To avoid frequent amendments to the standing orders when government departments are reorganised, the departments concerned are specified in a separate list maintained under powers granted in Standing Order 1A of each House, made in 2005.