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Acts of parliament, also called primary legislation, are statutes passed by a parliament (legislature).Act of the Oireachtas is an equivalent term used in the Republic of Ireland where the legislature is commonly known by its Irish name, Oireachtas . The United States Act of Congress is based on it.
A draft Act of Parliament is known as a bill. In other words a bill is a proposed law that needs to be discussed in the parliament before it can become a law.
In territories with a Westminster system, most bills that have any possibility of becoming law are introduced into parliament by the government. This will usually happen following the publication of a "white paper", setting out the issues and the way in which the proposed new law is intended to deal with them. A bill may also be introduced into parliament without formal government backing; this is known as a private member's bill.
In territories with a multicameral parliament, most bills may be first introduced in any chamber. However, certain types of legislation are required, either by constitutional convention or by law, to be introduced into a specific chamber. For example, bills imposing a tax, or involving public expenditure, are introduced into the House of Commons in the United Kingdom, Canada's House of Commons, Lok Sabha of India and Ireland's Dáil as a matter of law. Conversely, bills proposed by the Law Commission and consolidation bills traditionally start in the House of Lords.
Once introduced, a bill must go through a number of stages before it can become law. In theory, this allows the bill's provisions to be debated in detail, and for amendments to the original bill to also be introduced, debated, and agreed to.
In bicameral parliaments, a bill that has been approved by the chamber into which it was introduced then sends the bill to the other chamber. Broadly speaking, each chamber must separately agree to the same version of the bill. Finally, the approved bill receives assent; in most territories this is merely a formality, and is often a function exercised by the head of state.
In some countries, such as in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Spain and Portugal, the term for a bill differs depending on whether it is initiated by the government (when it is known as a "draft"), or by the Parliament (a "proposition", i.e., a private member's bill).
In Australia, the bill passes through the following stages:
In Canada, the bill passes through the following stages:
The debate on each stage is actually debate on a specific motion. For the first reading, there is no debate. For the second reading, the motion is "That this bill be now read a second time and be referred to [name of committee]" and for third reading "That this bill be now read a third time and pass." In the Committee stage, each clause is called and motions for amendments to these clauses, or that the clause stand part of the bill are made. In the Report stage, the debate is on the motions for specific amendments.
Once a bill has passed both Houses in an identical form, it receives final, formal examination by the Governor General, who gives it the royal assent. Although the Governor General can refuse to assent a bill or reserve the bill for the queen at this stage, this power has never been exercised.
Bills being reviewed by Parliament are assigned numbers: 2 to 200 for government bills, 201 to 1000 for private member's bills, and 1001 up for private bills. They are preceded by C- if they originate in the House of Commons, or S- if they originate in the Senate. For example, Bill C-250 was a private member's bill introduced in the House. Bills C-1 and S-1 are pro forma bills, and are introduced at the beginning of each session in order to assert the right of each Chamber to manage its own affairs. They are introduced and read a first time, and then are dropped from the Order Paper.
In the Parliament of India, every bill passes through following stages before it becomes an Act of Parliament of India:
In the Irish Parliament, the Oireachtas, bills pass through the following stages:Bills may be initiated in either the Dáil or the Seanad, and must pass both houses.
In New Zealand, the bill passes through the following stages:
A draft piece of legislation is called a bill, when this is passed by Parliament it becomes an Act and part of statute law. There are two types of bill and Act, public and private. Public Acts apply to the whole of the UK or a number of its constituent countries — England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Private Acts are local and personal in their effect, giving special powers to bodies such as local authorities or making exceptions to the law in particular geographic areas.
In the United Kingdom Parliament, each bill passes through the following stages:
In the Scottish Parliament,bills pass through the following stages:
There are special procedures for emergency bills, member's bills (similar to private member's bills in the UK Parliament), committee bills, and private bills.
In Singapore, the bill passes through these certain stages before becoming into an Act of Parliament.
Acts passed by the Parliament of England did not originally have titles, and could only be formally cited by reference to the parliamentary session in which they were passed, with each individual Act being identified by year and chapter number. Descriptive titles began to be added to the enrolled Acts by the official clerks, as a reference aid; over time, titles came to be included within the text of each bill. Since the mid-nineteenth century, it has also become common practice for Acts to have a short title, as a convenient alternative to the sometimes lengthy main titles. The Short Titles Act 1892, and its replacement the Short Titles Act 1896, gave short titles to many Acts which previously lacked them.
The numerical citation of Acts has also changed over time. The original method was based on the regnal year(s) in which the relevant parliament session met. This has been replaced in most territories by simple reference to the calendar year, with the first Act passed being chapter 1, and so on.
In the United Kingdom, legislation is referenced by year and chapter number. Each act is numbered consecutively based on the date they received royal assent. for example the 43rd act passed in 1980 would be 1980 Chapter 43. The full reference includes the title and would be The Magistrate's Court Act 1980 C. 43.
Until the 1980s, Acts of the Australian state of Victoria were numbered in a continuous sequence from 1857; thus the Age of Majority Act 1977 was No. 9075 of 1977.
The Parliament of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the UK Parliament, British Parliament or Westminster Parliament, as well as domestically simply as Parliament or Westminster, is the supreme legislative body of the United Kingdom, the Crown dependencies and the British Overseas Territories. It alone possesses legislative supremacy and thereby ultimate power over all other political bodies in the UK and the overseas territories. Parliament is bicameral but has three parts, consisting of the Sovereign (Queen-in-Parliament), the House of Lords, and the House of Commons. The two houses meet in the Palace of Westminster in the City of Westminster, one of the inner boroughs of the capital city, London.
The Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949 are two Acts of the Parliament of the United Kingdom, which form part of the constitution of the United Kingdom. Section 2(2) of the Parliament Act 1949 provides that the two Acts are to be construed as one.
The Parliament of Canada is the federal legislature of Canada, seated at Parliament Hill in Ottawa, the national capital. The body consists of the Canadian monarch, represented by a viceroy, the Governor General; an upper house, the Senate; and a lower house, the House of Commons. Each element has its own officers and organization. By constitutional convention, the House of Commons is dominant, with the Senate and monarch rarely opposing its will. The Senate reviews legislation from a less partisan standpoint and the monarch or viceroy provides royal assent to make bills into law.
A private member's bill in a parliamentary system of government is a bill introduced into a legislature by a legislator who is not acting on behalf of the executive branch. The designation "private member's bill" is used in most Westminster System jurisdictions, in which a "private member" is any member of parliament (MP) who is not a member of the cabinet (executive). Other labels may be used for the concept in other parliamentary systems; for example, the label member's bill is used in the Scottish Parliament and in the New Zealand Parliament. In presidential systems with a separation of the executive from the legislature, the concept does not arise since the executive cannot initiate legislation, and bills are introduced by individual legislators.
The New Zealand House of Representatives is a component of the New Zealand Parliament, along with the Sovereign. The House passes all laws, provides ministers to form a Cabinet, and supervises the work of the Government. It is also responsible for adopting the state's budgets and approving the state's accounts.
A bill is proposed legislation under consideration by a legislature. A bill does not become law until it is passed by the legislature and, in most cases, approved by the executive. Once a bill has been enacted into law, it is called an act of the legislature, or a statute. Bills are introduced in the legislature and are discussed, debated and voted upon.
The Maryland General Assembly is the state legislature of the U.S. state of Maryland that convenes within the State House in Annapolis. It is a bicameral body: the upper chamber, the Maryland State Senate, has 47 representatives and the lower chamber, the Maryland House of Delegates, has 141 representatives. Members of both houses serve four-year terms. Each house elects its own officers, judges the qualifications and election of its own members, establishes rules for the conduct of its business, and may punish or expel its own members.
The Civil Marriage Act was legislation legalizing same-sex marriage across Canada. At the time the bill became law, same-sex marriage had already been legalized by court decisions in all Canadian provinces except Alberta and Prince Edward Island, as well as in the territories of Nunavut and the Northwest Territories.
India is a democratic country having a Federal structure of:
The Parliament of The Bahamas is the bicameral national parliament of Commonwealth of The Bahamas. The parliament is formally made up of the Queen, an appointed Senate, and an elected House of Assembly. It currently sits at Nassau, the national capital.
A reading of a bill is a debate on the bill held by a general body of a legislature.
The Legislative and Regulatory Reform Act 2006 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It was enacted to replace the Regulatory Reform Act 2001 (RRA). The Act was and remains very controversial, because of a perception that it is an Enabling Act substantially removing the ancient British constitutional restriction on the Executive introducing and altering laws without assent or scrutiny by Parliament, and it has been called the "Abolition of Parliament Act".
In the British House of Commons, public bill committees consider Bills – proposed Acts of Parliament. The House of Lords does not have such committees, as Bills are usually considered by the House as a whole.
The Parliament of the Cook Islands is the legislature of the Cook Islands. Originally established under New Zealand’s United Nations mandate it became the national legislature on independence in 1965.
In the United Kingdom an Act of Parliament is primary legislation passed by the Parliament of the United Kingdom. As a result of the Glorious Revolution and the assertion of parliamentary sovereignty, any such Act is in theory supreme law that cannot be overturned by any body other than Parliament, although it has been recognised through the United Kingdom's membership of the European Union that Acts or parts of Acts which conflict with EU law can be disapplied.
Royal Succession Bills and Acts are pieces of (proposed) legislation to determine the legal line of succession to the Monarchy of the United Kingdom.
The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that provides both for repeal of the European Communities Act 1972, and for parliamentary approval to be required for any withdrawal agreement negotiated between HM Government and the European Union. The bill's passage through both Houses of Parliament was completed on 20 June 2018 and it became law by Royal Assent on 26 June.
The European Union Act 2017 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom to empower the Prime Minister to give to the Council of the European Union the formal notice – required by Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union – for starting negotiations for the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union.
The Marriage Amendment Act 2017 is an Act of the Parliament of Australia, which legalises same-sex marriage in Australia by amending the Marriage Act 1961 to allow marriage between two persons of marriageable age, regardless of their gender.
The European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2019, commonly referred to as the Cooper–Letwin Act, was an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that made provisions for extensions to the period defined under Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union related to the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the European Union. It was introduced to the House of Commons by Labour MP Yvette Cooper and Conservative MP Sir Oliver Letwin on 3 April 2019, in an unusual process where the Government of the United Kingdom did not have control over Commons business that day.
It has now been published in the Gazette of India, Extraordinary, Part-II, Section-1, dated the 13th September 2013 as Act No. 22 of 2013