MPs also do a great deal of informal work at Westminster. They may work through All Party Parliamentary Groups or Associate Parliamentary Groups, which are informal cross-party groups that have no official status within Parliament.
They are essentially run by and for Members of the Commons and Lords, although many APPGs involve individuals and organisations from outside Parliament in their administration and activities. Organisations which register as APPGs have to conform to rules about working in a cross-party way, and transparency in funding.
Register of All-Party Groups
The Register of All-Party Groups shows which APGs are recognised by the House of Commons, who their officers are, and what support APGs receive from outside Parliament.
Registration form for All-Party Groups
The Registration Form for All Party Groups ( PDF 260 KB) explains which groups qualify for registration and what a group must do before its details may be included on the Register. Essentially, this involves holding an election of officers and completing the Registration Form.
Any group that is thinking of applying for inclusion on the Register should first contact the Assistant Registrar on 020 7219 0401 to tell her the group's subject and discuss any queries you or she may have about the group.
Guide to the Rules on All-Party Groups
The Guide to the Rules details the House of Commons rules on APGs. These mostly concern aspects of membership, the conduct of meetings and the registration of support received by groups from sources outside Parliament.
A new Guide to the Rules ( PDF 363 KB) was published in July 2014, following the House's approval of various changes to the rules in May 2014. Please see this letter ( PDF 407 KB) from the Chair of the Committee on Standards to all Members for information about what the new rules are and when they will be implemented.
Income and Expenditure Statements
After the 2015 General Election, APGs which receive more than £12,500 in a financial year must prepare and publish an income and expenditure statement ( PDF 438 KB). In the meantime, for the remainder of the 2010 Parliament, all APGs which receive financial or material benefits are encouraged to keep good financial records and to prepare an income and expenditure statement on a voluntary basis as a matter of good practice.
Advice about the rules on All Party Groups
The Office of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards is responsible for the administration of the rules on APGs. For advice about the rules on APGs please see the Guide to the Rules above, or contact the Assistant Registrar on 020 7219 0401.