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Coronavirus (COVID-19): Find guidance on temporary procedures during the pandemic including voting, questions and statements. Members can find detailed guidance on participating virtually and voting on the Parliamentary intranet (please note: this link will only work if you have a parliamentary email account.)

How to submit a written question on paper

These steps are for submitting a written question on paper. You can also submit a written question online.

You or your staff can complete these steps, but your handwritten signature is needed for step 2.


  1. Fill in a question form (download a question form (Word Doc, 39 KB) from the intranet or get one from the Table Office).
    • Tick the box to specify whether it is an ordinary or named day written question. There is no set deadline for answers to ordinary questions, although departments usually respond between five and 10 working days after the question has been tabled. You can table up to five named day questions each day and they should receive an answer on the third sitting day after they’re tabled (unless you specify a later named day). A sitting day is a day when the House is meeting.
    • Fill in your name, constituency and the relevant department.
    • Tick the box if you have an interest to declare and email to say what the interest is.
    • Write the text of your question in the blank space on the form. Check it conforms to the rules for questions.
    • If you want to ask the same question to several departments, fill in one form and, beneath your question, list the departments and answering bodies you want to ask. Don’t put “all departments” unless you want it to go to all the answering bodies, some of which (such as the Church Commissioners) are very small.
  2. Take your question form to the Table Office in person, or ask another MP to take it for you. Or sign the question form and post it or ask your staff to take it to the Table Office (faxed, stamped or photocopied signatures cannot be accepted).
  3. The Table Office will check your question and contact you if they have a problem. Once the Table Office has approved your question, it has been tabled.