Office of Public Sector Information

Office of Public Sector Information

Main menu and contents


Crown Copyright

Copyright material which is produced by employees of the Crown in the course of their duties. Therefore, most material originated by ministers and civil servants is protected by Crown copyright.

Command Paper

Command Papers are Parliamentary Papers which derive their name from the fact they are presented to the United Kingdom Parliament nominally by "Command of Her Majesty", but in practice generally by a Government Minister.

Advisory Panel on Public Sector Information

Established by the Cabinet Office in 2003, the Advisory Panel on Public Sector Information (APPSI) is a Non-Departmental Public Body of the Ministry of Justice.

Click-Use Licence

Click-use is the term used to describe our online licences for the re-use of Crown copyright information, Public Sector Information and Parliamentary copyright information

Explanatory Notes

With effect from the first Public General Act of 1999, all new Public Acts which result from Bills introduced into either House of Parliament by a Government Minister (with the exception of Appropriation, Consolidated Fund, Finance and Consolidation Acts), are accompanied by Explanatory Notes. The text of the Explanatory Notes is produced by the Government Department responsible for the subject matter of the Act. The purpose of these Explanatory Notes is to make the Act of Parliament accessible to readers who are not legally qualified and who have no specialised knowledge of the matters dealt with. They are intended to allow the reader to grasp what the Act sets out to achieve and place its effect in context.

Explanatory Notes are optional for Acts which result from the successful passage of Private Members Bills and it is expected that few (if any) will be published for such Acts.

The aim is to publish these documents on this website simultaneously with their publication in printed form. Explanatory Notes should be published on this website at the same time as the Act but this might not always be possible and may follow some days after the publication of the Act on this site.

A template for the creation of Explanatory Notes is available for authorised users.