HC Deb 11 March 2003 vol 401 cc155-6W
Mr. Gordon Prentice

To ask the President of the Council what discussions he has had with the Lord Chancellor concerning the appropriateness of peers convicted of an offence resulting in imprisonment(a) retaining their title and (b) retaining their membership of the House of Lords; and if he will make a statement. [101814]

Mr. Robin Cook

The Government made it clear in its November 2001 White Paper "The House of Lords: completing the reform" (Cm 5291) that it wished to consider the question of disqualification for membership of the House of Lords. Bringing the rules into line with those for the House of Commons, under which MPs convicted of an offence and sentenced to a term of imprisonment exceeding 12 months lose their seats, was one of the options proposed. Such a change would require primary legislation, as would any change to deprive a convicted peer of his or her title.