Point of order


Point of order

:"For the 1964 documentary film, see Point of Order (film). For other uses see Point"A point of order is a matter raised during consideration of a motion concerning the rules of parliamentary procedure.

Explanation and uses

infobox motion
name = Point of order (RONR)
class = I
inorder = Yes
seconded = No
debatable = No (but chair can permit full explanation)
amendable = No
voterequired = Is ruled by the chair
reconsidered = No
A point of order may be raised if the rules appear to have been broken. This may interrupt a speaker during debate, or anything else if the breach of the rules warrants it. The point is resolved before business continues.

The point of order calls upon the chair to make a ruling. The motion is sometimes erroneously used to ask a question of information or a question of parliamentary procedure. The chair may rule on the point of order or submit it to the judgment of the assembly. If the chair accepts the point of order, it is said to be "sustained" or ruled "well-taken". If not, it is said to be "overruled" or ruled "not well-taken".

Ordinary societies

In organizations other than legislative bodies, the ruling of the chair may be appealed to the assembly in most cases. Unless the chair's ruling is overturned by tie or majority vote in the negative, it stands. (The vote that is taken is a vote on whether or not to uphold the decision of the chair, so if the motion fails the decision is overturned.)

Legislative use

Until recently in the British House of Commons it was required that a member raising a point of order while the House is voting be wearing a hat, and two hats were kept in the House for such occasions. This practice has now been abolished. [http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/82580.stm]

In the United States Senate, the chair's ruling may be appealed by any Senator. The Senate votes on the appeal and the chair has been frequently overturned. Points of order with regard to the Budget Act or annual budget resolution may be waived by 3/5 of the Senate's entire membership. Rule XVI, which prohibits normal legislation in appropriations legislation, may be waived by 2/3 of the Senate. [http://rules.senate.gov/senaterules/rule16.php]

In the United States House of Representatives tradition, appeals are also possible, but rarely entered and almost never succeed.

In the Irish Parliament (an t-Oireachtas), a point of order is "a submission to the chair in respect of a decision he has not yet taken with a view to influening that decision by presenting certain facts or arguments." This cannot arise in relation to a decision already taken and must relate to a procedural item in the House or on the Standing Orders. A point of information cannot be raised when the Chair (Ceann Comhairle or Cathaoirleach) is:1) dealing with disorder, 2) putting a question, 3) addressing the House or 4) dealing with an order of the house.These rules come mainly from precedent and common practice, as there is no provision in the official Standing Orders [http://www.oireachtas.ie/documents/proceduralDocuments/STANDING-ORDERS-ENGLISH.pdf] for Points of Order. They are, however, usually dealt with in the standing orders as motions.


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • point of order — ˌpoint of ˈorder noun points of order PLURALFORM [countable] in a meeting or parliament, a question about whether its rules are being followed properly: • The South Carolina Democrat raised a point of order against the planned change. * * * point …   Financial and business terms

  • Point of order — Point Point, n. [F. point, and probably also pointe, L. punctum, puncta, fr. pungere, punctum, to prick. See {Pungent}, and cf. {Puncto}, {Puncture}.] 1. That which pricks or pierces; the sharp end of anything, esp. the sharp end of a piercing… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • point of order — plural points of order n formal a rule used to organize an official meeting on a point of order (=according to a rule) ▪ One MP raised an objection on a point of order …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • point of order — ► NOUN (pl. points of order) ▪ a query in a formal debate or meeting as to whether correct procedure is being followed …   English terms dictionary

  • point of order — noun count a question about whether something is against the rules of a meeting …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • point of order — n. a question as to whether the rules of parliamentary procedure are being observed …   English World dictionary

  • point of order — noun a question as to whether the current proceedings are allowed by parliamentary procedure • Hypernyms: ↑order, ↑rules of order, ↑parliamentary law, ↑parliamentary procedure * * * noun, pl points of order [count] formal : a question or… …   Useful english dictionary

  • point of order — points of order N COUNT: usu sing In a formal debate, a point of order is an official complaint that someone makes because the rules about how the debate is meant to be organized have been broken. [FORMAL] A point of order was raised in… …   English dictionary

  • point of order — UK / US noun [countable] Word forms point of order : singular point of order plural points of order a question about whether something is against the rules of a meeting …   English dictionary

  • point of order — noun (C) formal a rule connected with the organization of an official meeting: One MP raised an objection on a point of order …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English


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