Party Political Activity

Guidance for Party Political Applicants

Guidelines for crossbench appointments for applicants who have been actively involved with a political party

The Commission has set out out the following guidelines for those individuals who are considering applying to become a crossbench peer in the House of Lords that have been actively involved with a Political Party:

  • Under the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 (PPERA), a donation is money, goods or services given to a party without charge or on non-commercial terms, with a value of over £500. Donations of £500 or less are outside the scope of PPERA and you do not need to record or report them. We therefore do not require applicants to declare any donations made to political parties that fall under this threshold


  • Standard fee paying membership is not considered to be a bar to successful appointment, though nominees will still be required to satisfy themselves and the Commission that they are comfortable operating outside a party–political framework.


  • More significant party political involvement, such as holding political office for a party, is likely to represent a bar to successful consideration for the crossbenches.


  • For the range of political activities mentioned in the application form that fall between the above cases, the Commission will assess each instance on a case by case basis. This will take into account the duration and scale of the involvement, as well as the amount of time since the mentioned activities took place. The more significant the role, and the longer and more recently that role has been held, the less likely the Commission is to consider an applicant as politically neutral.