Amendments usually need to be submitted three working days before they’re due to be considered. The stars on the amendment paper are a way of indicating how long ago the amendment was submitted:
- no star means the amendment has appeared on the amendment paper for the required three-day period and is eligible to be selected by the Chair
- a hollow star means it is the second day the amendment has appeared on the amendment paper
- a full black star means this is the first day the amendment has appeared on the amendment paper
Manuscript amendments are amendments where no notice has been given. They are rare. They may have been received and selected by the Chair the same morning the bill is being considered in the Chamber or committee. It’s the Chair’s decision whether to select manuscript amendments for debate and normally they won’t be selected. Manuscript amendments that have been selected by the Chair are made available as soon as possible in the Vote Office and on Bills before Parliament on Parliament’s website. If the manuscript amendment relates to a bill in Committee of the Whole House, the annunciators (the monitors around the parliamentary estate) will display a message to inform MPs when they are available.