The debate in a Delegated Legislation Committee takes place on a motion that “the Committee has considered” the statutory instrument.

The rules are similar to the Chamber. You stand to speak, address the Chair, refer to other MPs by their constituencies and you can try to intervene on speeches. The Chair decides the speaking order.

For an affirmative statutory instrument, the minister moves the motion and makes an opening speech. When the minister finishes, the official Opposition spokesperson, other party spokespeople and then backbenchers make speeches. The minister then makes a closing speech.

For a negative statutory instrument, the MP who submitted the motion objecting to the statutory instrument usually moves the motion (although any member of the Committee, including the minister, could move it if necessary) and makes the opening speech. This is followed by speeches by the official Opposition spokesperson, other party spokespeople and any backbenchers who want to speak. The minister responds. The MP who submitted the motion may be able to speak again at the end if there’s time.

At the end of the debate, the Committee has to decide whether it agrees with the motion that it has considered the statutory instrument. Often this is agreed without a vote.

Even if the Committee votes against the motion, the statutory instrument can still proceed to its next stage. This is because the motion is simply about whether the Committee has considered the statutory instrument. The vote on whether to approve an affirmative statutory instrument (or annul a negative statutory instrument) takes place in the Chamber.