About Members' Bills

A Member’s Bill is a public Bill introduced by an individual MSP. Members’ Bills are distinct from Executive Bills (introduced by Scottish Government ministers) and Committee Bills (introduced by committee conveners).

Before introducing a Member’s Bill, the MSP must first lodge a draft proposal and then a final proposal. The draft proposal must be accompanied either by a consultation document or by a statement of reasons why the MSP does not consider consultation necessary (which is subject to scrutiny by a committee).

The final proposal, which must be broadly similar to the draft proposal, is published in the Business Bulletin for a month. If, by the end of that period, it has been supported by at least 18 other MSPs from at least half of the parties or groups represented in the Parliamentary Bureau and the Scottish Government has not exercised its right to block the proposal (on the grounds that either it or the UK Government will legislate in similar terms), the MSP secures a right to introduce a Bill to give effect to the proposal. This right may be exercised until the beginning of June in the penultimate year of the session.

Once introduced, a Member’s Bill is subject to the same three-stage scrutiny process as other public Bills.