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Finance Bill

The Finance Bill gives legal effect to the taxation proposals contained within the Budget resolutions which are agreed after the Budget debate. It may also cover other matters relating to the administration of the tax system. It can often be lengthy, running into hundreds of clauses, and can be published in several volumes.

The Finance Bill receives its first reading in the House immediately after the Budget resolutions have been agreed. It goes through the same stages as any other bill, and you have a chance to take part in debates on it. The only difference is that its committee stage is usually split: some clauses are considered in a Committee of the whole House, and the rest in a public bill committee. The public bill committee on the Finance Bill doesn’t take oral evidence, but it does receive written evidence. If you would like to be on the public bill committee, you should speak to your whips.

The moment of interruption (the point at which the main business of the day must usually end) doesn’t apply to debates on the Finance Bill. But the Finance Bill will often be subject to a programme order, meaning that proceedings after second reading are time-limited.

You can submit amendments to the Finance Bill in the same way as for any other bill. Amendments can be handed in at the Table in front of the Speaker in the Chamber immediately after second reading, or otherwise in the Public Bill Office.

The same rules that apply to amendments to other bills apply to amendments to the Finance Bill. In addition, amendments must not go beyond the scope of the Budget resolutions, or increase the amount or extent of any tax proposed by the Government, or propose new taxes.

The House of Lords debates the Finance Bill but does not amend it.

You can see an example of a Finance Bill.