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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 an amendment to a substantive motion

These steps are for you as an MP, although your staff can help you with steps 1 and 2.


  1. Find the text of the motion. Once it has been tabled, it will be in the Future Business section of the Order Paper. If you can’t find the motion in the Order Paper, you can go to the Table Office and ask to see the text.
  2. Write your amendment. The wording is: “to leave out (the words you want to omit from the motion) and insert (your words)”, or, if you want to leave out more than six words, “from ‘x’ to ‘y’ and insert (your words).” The amendment must: be relevant to the original motion; not achieve the same effect as voting against the motion; not be unintelligible, ungrammatical, vague, or mocking.
  3. Take the amendment to the Table Office, who will check whether it’s in order. They can advise you on alterations. Another MP can take the amendment to the Table Office on your behalf. The deadline for tabling your amendment is the time the House finishes meeting on the day before the debate, but if possible you should submit it well in advance, so that it appears on the Order Paper, where other MPs can see it and add their names to it.
  4. Once the Table Office has accepted your amendment, it has been tabled.
  5. If the Speaker selects your amendment, you will need to move the amendment in the Chamber.