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Scotland Act 1998

Details of Provisions

Subsection (1) provides for a by-election to be held when the seat of a constituency member becomes vacant (subject to subsection (4)).

Subsection (2) states that the date of the poll in that by-election shall be fixed by the Presiding Officer.

Subsection (3) provides that the date of the poll in the by-election should be no later than three months after the vacancy arises unless notification of the vacancy is not made to the Presiding Officer within one month of the vacancy arising. In such circumstances the date of the election is to be fixed within three months of it being brought to the Presiding Officer’s attention.

Subsection (4) provides that a by‑election shall not be held if the latest date for holding the poll in that by-election would fall within the period of three months ending with the due day of the poll in the next ordinary general election. This avoids the cost and work of the election process for the sake of filling a seat for a short period of months.

Subsection (5) provides for the Standing Orders of the Parliament to determine the date on which a vacancy is deemed to have occurred.

Subsection (6) provides that a person who is already a member of the Parliament or a candidate to fill another vacancy is not eligible to stand for election at a by-election.

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