An Act respecting the Parliament of Canada
Marginal note:Short title
PART ISenate and House of Commons
Marginal note:Demise of the Crown
2 Parliament shall not determine or be dissolved by the demise of the Crown and, notwithstanding the demise, shall continue, and may meet, convene and sit, proceed and act, in the same manner as if that demise had not happened.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 2
Marginal note:Prerogative saved
3 Nothing in section 2 alters or abridges the power of the Crown to prorogue or dissolve Parliament.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 3
Privileges, Immunities and Powers
Marginal note:Parliamentary privileges, immunities and powers
4 The Senate and the House of Commons, respectively, and the members thereof hold, enjoy and exercise
(a) such and the like privileges, immunities and powers as, at the time of the passing of the Constitution Act, 1867, were held, enjoyed and exercised by the Commons House of Parliament of the United Kingdom and by the members thereof, in so far as is consistent with that Act; and
(b) such privileges, immunities and powers as are defined by Act of the Parliament of Canada, not exceeding those, at the time of the passing of the Act, held, enjoyed and exercised by the Commons House of Parliament of the United Kingdom and by the members thereof.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 4
Marginal note:Judicial notice
5 The privileges, immunities and powers held, enjoyed and exercised in accordance with section 4 are part of the general and public law of Canada and it is not necessary to plead them but they shall, in all courts in Canada, and by and before all judges, be taken notice of judicially.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 5
Marginal note:Printed copy of journals
6 On any inquiry concerning the privileges, immunities and powers of the Senate and the House of Commons or of any member of either House, any copy of the journals of either House, printed or purported to be printed by order thereof, shall be admitted as evidence of the journals by all courts, justices and others, without proof that the copy was printed by order of either House.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 6
Publication of Proceedings
Marginal note:Proceedings based on published report
7 (1) Where any person is a defendant in any civil or criminal proceedings that are commenced or prosecuted in a court in any manner for, on account of or in respect of the publication of any report, paper, votes or proceedings, by that person or the servant of that person, by or under the authority of the Senate or the House of Commons, that person may bring before the court or any judge thereof, after twenty-four hours notice of intention to do so given in accordance with subsection (2), a certificate
(a) given under the hand of the Speaker or the Clerk of the Senate or the House of Commons, and
(b) stating that the report, paper, votes or proceedings were published by that person or servant, by order or under the authority of the Senate or the House of Commons,
together with an affidavit verifying the certificate.
Marginal note:Notice of intention
(2) The notice of intention referred to in subsection (1) shall be given to the plaintiff or prosecutor in the civil or criminal proceedings or to the attorney or solicitor of the plaintiff or prosecutor.
Marginal note:Stay of proceedings
(3) On the bringing of a certificate before a court or judge in accordance with subsection (1), the court or judge shall immediately stay the civil or criminal proceedings, and those proceedings and every writ or process issued therein shall be deemed to be finally determined and superseded by virtue of this Act.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 7
Marginal note:Proof of correctness of copy
8 (1) Where any civil or criminal proceedings are commenced or prosecuted in a court for, on account of or in respect of the publication of any copy of a report, paper, votes or proceedings referred to in subsection 7(1), the defendant, at any stage of the proceedings, may bring before the court, or any judge thereof, the report, paper, votes or proceedings and the copy, together with an affidavit verifying the report, paper, votes or proceedings and the correctness of the copy.
Marginal note:Stay of proceedings
(2) On the bringing before a court or any judge thereof of any report, paper, votes or proceedings and a copy thereof with affidavit in accordance with subsection (1), the court or judge shall immediately stay the civil or criminal proceedings, and those proceedings and every writ or process issued therein shall be deemed to be finally determined and superseded by virtue of this Act.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 8
Marginal note:Proof in action for printing extract or abstract
9 In any civil or criminal proceedings commenced or prosecuted for printing an extract from or abstract of any report, paper, votes or proceedings referred to in subsection 7(1), the report, paper, votes or proceedings may be given in evidence and it may be shown that the extract or abstract was published in good faith and without malice and, if such is the opinion of the jury, a verdict of not guilty shall be entered for the defendant.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 9
Examination of Witnesses
Marginal note:Examination of witnesses under oath
10 (1) The Senate or the House of Commons may administer an oath to any witness examined at the bar of the Senate or the House.
Marginal note:Examination before committee
(2) The Senate or the House of Commons may order witnesses to be examined on oath before any committee.
Marginal note:Committee may administer oath
(3) Any committee of the Senate or the House of Commons may administer an oath to any witness examined before the committee.
- R.S., c. S-8, ss. 25 to 27
11 (1) Where any witness to be examined under this Part conscientiously objects to take an oath, the witness may make a solemn affirmation and declaration.
Marginal note:Effect of affirmation
(2) Any solemn affirmation and declaration made under subsection (1) has the same force and effect, and entails the same consequences, as an oath taken in the usual form.
- R.S., c. S-8, ss. 28, 29
12 Any person examined under this Part who wilfully gives false evidence is liable to such punishment as may be imposed for perjury.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 31
Marginal note:Administering of oaths and affirmations
13 (1) Any oath or solemn affirmation and declaration under this Part may be administered by
(a) the Speaker of the Senate or the House of Commons;
(b) the chairman of any committee of the Senate or the House of Commons; or
(c) such person or persons as may be appointed for that purpose either by the Speaker of the Senate or by the Speaker of the House of Commons or by standing or other order of the Senate or the House.
(2) Every oath and solemn affirmation and declaration under this Part shall be in the Forms 1 and 2 in the schedule.
- R.S., c. S-8, ss. 30, 32
Conflict of Interest
14 [Repealed, 2004, c. 7, s. 1]
15 [Repealed, 2004, c. 7, s. 1]
Marginal note:Receiving prohibited compensation
16 (1) No member of the Senate shall receive or agree to receive any compensation, directly or indirectly, for services rendered or to be rendered to any person, either by the member or another person,
(a) in relation to any bill, proceeding, contract, claim, controversy, charge, accusation, arrest or other matter before the Senate or the House of Commons or a committee of either House; or
(b) for the purpose of influencing or attempting to influence any member of either House.
Marginal note:Offence and punishment
(2) Every member of the Senate who contravenes subsection (1) is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine of not less than one thousand dollars and not more than four thousand dollars.
Marginal note:Offering prohibited compensation
(3) Every person who gives, offers or promises to any member of the Senate any compensation for services described in subsection (1), rendered or to be rendered, is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year and to a fine of not less than five hundred dollars and not more than two thousand dollars.
- R.S., c. S-8, s. 23
Marginal note:Speaker leaving the chair
17 Whenever the Speaker of the Senate, from illness or other cause, finds it necessary to leave the chair during any part of the sittings of the Senate on any day, the Speaker may call on any senator to take the chair and preside as Speaker during the remainder of that day unless the Speaker resumes the chair before the close of the sittings for that day.
- R.S., c. S-14, s. 2
Marginal note:Unavoidable absence
18 Whenever the Senate is informed of the unavoidable absence of the Speaker thereof by the Clerk at the table, the Senate may choose any senator to preside as Speaker during such absence and that senator thereupon has and shall execute all the powers, privileges and duties of Speaker until the Speaker resumes the chair or another Speaker is appointed by the Governor General.
- R.S., c. S-14, s. 3
Marginal note:Validity of acts
19 Every act done by any senator acting pursuant to section 17 or 18 has the same effect and validity as if the act had been done by the Speaker.
- R.S., c. S-14, s. 4
19.1 (1) In this section and sections 19.2 to 19.9, Committee means the Standing Senate Committee on Internal Economy, Budgets and Administration established by the Senate under its rules.
Marginal note:Intersessional authority
(2) During a period of prorogation or dissolution of Parliament and until the members of a successor Committee are appointed by the Senate, the Committee continues to exist for the purposes of this Act and, subject to subsection (3), every member of the Committee, while still a senator, remains a member of the Committee as if there had been no prorogation or dissolution.
Marginal note:Composition of Committee
(3) The Leader of the Government in the Senate or Government Representative in the Senate, or his or her nominee, the Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, or his or her nominee, and the Leader or Facilitator of every other recognized party or parliamentary group in the Senate, or his or her nominee, may, in accordance with the rules of the Senate, change the membership of the Committee from time to time, including during periods of prorogation or dissolution.
Marginal note:Senate control
(4) In exercising its functions and powers under this Act, the Committee is subject to the rules, direction and control of the Senate.
(5) Where the Chairman of the Committee deems that there is an emergency, the Committee’s Sub-committee on Agenda and Procedure may exercise any power of the Committee under this Act.
Marginal note:Report of decision
(6) The Chairman of the Committee shall report to the Committee any decision made under subsection (5) at the meeting of the Committee immediately following the decision.
- 1991, c. 20, s. 1
- 2022, c. 10, s. 238
Marginal note:Capacity of Committee
19.2 (1) In exercising the powers and carrying out the functions conferred upon it pursuant to this Act, the Committee has the capacity of a natural person and may
(a) enter into contracts, memoranda of understanding or other arrangements in the name of the Senate or in the name of the Committee; and
(b) do all such things as are necessary or incidental to the exercising of its powers or the carrying out of its functions.
(2) Where a member of the Committee participates in the exercise of the powers or the carrying out of the functions of the Committee, the member shall not be held personally liable for the actions of the Committee.
- 1991, c. 20, s. 1
Marginal note:Function of Committee inter alia
19.3 Subject to subsection 19.1(4), the Committee may act on all financial and administrative matters respecting
(a) the Senate, its premises, its services and its staff; and
(b) the members of the Senate.
- 1991, c. 20, s. 1
Marginal note:Main Estimate to be prepared
19.4 Prior to each fiscal year the Committee shall cause to be prepared an estimate of the sums that will be required to be provided by Parliament for the payment of the charges and expenses of the Senate and of the members thereof during the fiscal year.
- 1991, c. 20, s. 1
19.5 (1) The Committee may make regulations
(a) governing the use by senators of funds, goods, services and premises made available to them for the carrying out of their parliamentary functions;
(b) prescribing the terms and conditions of the management of, and accounting for, by senators, of funds referred to in paragraph (a); and
(c) respecting all such things as are necessary or incidental to the exercise of its powers and the carrying out of its functions.
Marginal note:Chairman to table regulations
(2) The Chairman of the Committee shall table before the Senate the regulations made under this section on any of the first thirty days after the making thereof.
Marginal note:Chairman to make regulations available
(3) When the Senate is not sitting, the Chairman of the Committee shall cause the regulations made under this section to be deposited with the Clerk of that House and such regulations shall thereupon be deemed to have been tabled before the Senate.
Marginal note:Coming into force
(4) Subject to subsection (5), regulations made under this section come into force on such day as may be fixed by resolution of the Senate.
Marginal note:Earlier effect
(5) Regulations made and tabled under this section during a period of prorogation or dissolution of Parliament have effect without a resolution of the Senate until the end of the thirtieth sitting day of the session of Parliament immediately following the prorogation or dissolution, unless they are earlier rescinded by the Senate.
Marginal note:Regulations not statutory instruments
(6) Regulations made under this section shall be deemed not to be statutory instruments for the purposes of the Statutory Instruments Act.
- 1991, c. 20, s. 1
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