What we do

We set, administer and regulate MPs’ staffing and business costs, pay, and pensions.

We are independent of parliament and the government. This means we make decisions about the rules on business costs and on MPs’ pay impartially, without influence from MPs.

While much of our work involves providing support and advice to MPs and their staff, we are also committed to providing the public with data about MPs’ spending.

Transparency lies at the heart of everything we do.

Every two months we publish details of the latest claims made by MPs and their staff.

Each year we publish a full set of information about every MPs’ spending, as well as other aspects of their activity.

You can read our Publication Policy to find out more.

What we do large rounded

We have three main responsibilities:

  • to regulate MPs’ staffing and business costs

  • to determine MPs’ pay and pension arrangements

  • to provide financial support to MPs in carrying out their parliamentary functions

Each year we spend around £120m on MPs’ staffing and business costs.

Most of this – around £100m – is spent on MPs’ staff salaries and related costs.

Much of the rest is used to pay for:

  • running MPs’ constituency offices

  • travel within the constituency, and between the constituency and London

  • accommodation and security

We also pay about £50m a year for MPs’ salaries, national insurance and pension contributions.

In a normal year, our own costs are about £6m.

As the independent regulator of MPs’ pay, pensions, and staffing and business costs we:

MPs are required to stay within budgets for different costs that we set.

We help MPs and their staff comply with the rules by providing advice and guidance.

We monitor how well the rules are being followed, analyse spending patterns and follow up on possible breaches.

Our approach means we achieve a high level of compliance with the rules, without adding unnecessary burdens.

We are committed to openness and transparency. We publish data on MPs’ staffing and business costs every two months so that everyone can access this information.

Our role is to regulate MPs’ business costs and provide the resources necessary for MPs to carry out their parliamentary functions.

Part of our role is to help MPs and their staff to understand the rules of the Scheme and know how to complete the necessary processes to account for the public money they use.

We have MP Support and Payroll teams who offer support by email and over the phone. We provide guidance on the rules and host training sessions to deliver further support.

While we remain independent, we meet regularly with MPs to gain feedback on our service. We also host a regular meeting with MPs’ staff to help us to understand the needs of MPs and ensure we are providing the right support.

Working with MPs and MPs’ staff ensures that compliance with the rules remains high and that MPs have the resources they need to fulfil their duties to support and represent their constituents.

We have a legal responsibility to regulate and administer MPs pay and business costs in a clear and transparent way on behalf of the public.

We do this using the Scheme of MPs’ Business Costs and Expenses.

The Scheme is a set of rules and principles that govern what MPs can and cannot claim for, and includes details of how MPs should make claims.

It allows MPs to be reimbursed for costs incurred in the performance of their parliamentary and constituency functions.

We review the Scheme regularly to ensure the budgets and rules remain up-to-date. Our reviews ensure public money is spent and accounted for properly and that MPs have the support they need to perform their parliamentary functions to support and represent their constituents.

When we review the rules, we carry out public consultations so we have a wide range of views to inform our decision making.

Read the latest version of the Scheme.

We publish information about claims made by MPs, under the Scheme, in regular cycles.

We publish all MPs’ staffing and business costs individually except for security and disability costs. These are published as one total amount for security and privacy reasons.

We are also subject to the Freedom of Information Act.

Our Publication Policy sets out what information we publish on the spending of public funds by MPs, in accordance with the Scheme.

You can find out more in our guide to MPs’ staffing and business costs.

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