Lords Constitution Committee to investigate the constitutional implications of Scottish independence

24 January 2014


The House of Lords Constitution Committee has today launched a new inquiry into the possible constitutional implications for the rest of the UK in the event of a “yes” vote in the Scottish independence referendum.

The Committee is inviting written evidence to be received by 28 February. 

Commenting, Baroness Jay of Paddington, Chairman of the House of Lords Constitution Committee, said:

“If Scottish voters vote “yes” in September it will clearly have a significant constitutional impact on the rest of the UK. It is important ahead of the referendum that voters are fully informed about the possible implications of the vote.

“We will consider issues that will be raised in event of a “yes” vote in the referendum, for example, the negotiations that would follow the poll and the status of MPs from Scottish constituencies between the referendum and full independence, which is proposed for March 2016. 

“We are keen to receive a range of views in this inquiry and invite interested parties to make a submission.”

Questions the Committee are inviting evidence on include: 

  • Is the timetable of independence by 24 March 2016 realistic in the event of “yes” vote in September 2014?
  • Who would negotiate for the rest of the UK and to whom would they be accountable?
  • What impact would the UK general election in May 2015 have on independence negotiations?
  • What would be the impact of Scottish independence on Scottish MPs and Members of the House of Lords?
  • What legislation would the Westminster Parliament have to pass in order for Scotland to become independent?

The above questions are predicated on there being a “yes” vote. The inquiry will be focused and the Committee will not consider an independent Scotland’s international relations or membership of the European Union.

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