House of Lords Appointments Commission

House of Lords Appointment Commission

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The Assessment Process

The assessment process includes a number of stages to ensure that all nominations are considered fairly and consistently. The process is summarised below.

Stage 1

Before the assessment begins, a number of objective checks on eligibility are made. For example, it is a statutory requirement that appointees to the Lords are UK, Commonwealth or Irish nationals, aged over 21. The Commission may also check that nominees are resident in the UK for tax purposes. Nominees who do not meet these criteria will not be considered further.

Stage 2

The Commission's Secretariat carries out the first sift. At least two team members make an initial assessment of the nomination against the published criteria. The team then discusses their separate assessments and agree a final recommendation for discussion by a sub-committee.

Stage 3

A sub-committee of the Commission meets to discuss the Secretariat's recommendations. The sub-committee considers all the nominations and agrees its recommendations for consideration by the Commission as a whole.

Stage 4

References are taken up for those nominees whom the sub-committee wished to recommend for interview.

Stage 5

The Commission considers the sub-committee's recommendations, including the references for potential interviewees, and decides which nomineees best meet the published criteria and should be invited to interview. The Commission interviews many more people than it is able to recommend.

Stage 6

A sub-committee of the Commission interviews the selected nominees. At least two Commission members, including the Chairman, meet each interviewee.

Stage 7

Following the interviews, the Commission reviews all the information about a nominee before reaching a decision on the outcome. The Commission may also decide that it wishes to invite the nominee back for a second interview before reaching its final decision.


Unsuccessful nominations

Please be patient in following up your nomination. The Commission is not able to respond within the same time as you would expect from a "normal" job application. It may wish to consider nominations over a period of time. Once the Commission has decided, however, not to recommend a nominee for appointment, it will let the nominee know as soon as possible. The Commission does not undertake to provide reasons as to why a nominee has been unsuccessful.

Please note that your nomination form will be destroyed three months after you are informed of the Commission's decision. Nomination forms and supporting material will not be returned. All nominees are welcome to submit a further nomination in the future, particularly if they have developed skills and experience relevant to the published criteria.


Checking or vetting nominations for propriety

The Commission is charged with vetting all recommendations for life peerages to ensure nominees have upheld the highest standards of propriety. This includes those nominees it wishes to recommend for non-party-political membership of the House of Lords.

The Commission will wish to be satisfied, amongst other things, that nominees are not and never have been a threat to the national security of the United Kingdom or any other country; that they have complied, in a straightforward way, with their obligations in relation to taxation and the receipt of benefits; and that there are no serious doubts about their integrity in relation to their working life. The Commission expects nominees to be resident in the United Kingdom for tax purposes.

Past criminal convictions will not automatically disqualify candidates. The Commission will take into account convictions for serious criminal offences but believes strongly in the rehabilitation of offenders. In that spirit, nominees are encouraged to provide details of convictions or any other matters that they believe should be brought to the Commission's attention.

The Commission's scrutiny of nominations includes significant political donations made by nominees, using thresholds set by the Electoral Commission.

The nomination form includes a section requesting the nominee's consent to releasing information in the nomination form to enable further inquiries to be made. the Commission will need to check with former employers, Government departments and agencies, other organisations and individuals to provide an assurance as to the propriety of nominees. This will be done in confidence.

You can find out more about the Commission's vetting role here [opens new page].