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House of Lords Audit Committee - role

The Audit Committee considers internal and external audit reports and management responses and provides advice to the Clerk of the Parliaments (in his role as the Accounting Officer) and senior management on the effectiveness of internal controls.

Terms of reference

The terms of reference for the Audit Committee, agreed in November 2011, are:

1. To consider internal and external audit reports and other material, and to assess management responses thereto;

2. To advise the Clerk of the Parliaments as Accounting Officer on the suitability of the annual internal audit work programme and to monitor progress against the audit plan;

3. To provide advice to the Clerk of the Parliaments in the exercise of his responsibilities as Accounting Officer;

4. To evaluate the adequacy of the risk management system and the suitability of the control arrangements reported to it, and to advise the Clerk of the Parliaments as Accounting Officer and the Management Board accordingly;

5. To encourage value for money, good financial practice, appropriate internal controls, and effective governance throughout the administration of the House;

6. To review the annual financial statements and accounts;

7. To make an annual report to the House, to be submitted, in the first instance, to the House Committee and to be published with the House of Lords' Annual Report;

8. To work with the House of Commons Administration Estimate Audit Committee to monitor areas of joint interest of both Houses;

9. To review regularly the effectiveness of the Audit Committee. 

Timeline formation

The House of Lords Audit Committee was established in 2002, by the House of Lords Offices Committee (Fifth Report, Session 2001-02, HL Paper 105), following a recommendation from a Working Group on Management and Services in the House. The Committee’s membership is appointed by the House Committee.

Meetings

The Committee meets four times a year and on a further two occasions jointly with the House of Commons Administration Estimate Audit Committee. It reports annually to the House.

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