HC Deb 26 February 1917 vol 90 cc1691-2

May I ask you, Mr. Speaker, a question of which I have given private notice: Whether when a Member elected to this House finds himself unable or neglects to take the oath of allegiance, he is entitled to draw his salary as a Member of the House?


I informed the hon. Member and the House—I think it was a week ago—that there were certain legal questions which had arisen, and I thought it was my duty to consult the Law Officers of the Crown with regard to them. I have now done that, and I have had their opinion. Some doubts arose as to the exact moment of time at which a Member's salary became payable, and the question I asked the Law Officers of the Crown was whether there was any statutory regulation with regard to that, or whether the exact moment was to be fixed administratively. The answer I got was that there was no statutory enactment fixing the exact moment of time at which the salary was to become payable. Therefore I presume it rests with me and becomes part of my duty to fix by instructions to the Department concerned the exact moment when the salary becomes payable. I believe if I fix as that moment the time when an hon. Member qualifies himself to perform his duty as a Member by taking and subscribing the oath, I shall be carrying out the views of the House, and I propose to issue an instruction to the Department to that effect.