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Protection of Freedoms Act 2012

Type of Bill:
Government Bill
Sponsors:
Theresa May
Home Office
Lord Henley
Home Office

Progress of the Bill

Bill started in the House of Commons

  1. House of Commons
    1. 1st reading
    2. 2nd reading
    3. Committee stage
    4. Report stage
    5. 3rd reading
  2. House of Lords
    1. 1st reading
    2. 2nd reading
    3. Committee stage
    4. Report stage
    5. 3rd reading
  3. Consideration of Amendments
  4. Royal Assent

Last event

Act of Parliament

House Act Date
Lords HL Bill 134 2010-12 (Commons Reason and Amendments) | PDF version, 80KB 21.03.2012

Latest news on the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012

Following agreement by both Houses on the text of the Bill it received Royal Assent on 1 May.

The Bill is now an Act of Parliament (law).

Summary of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012

The Bill includes a wide range of measures.

Key areas

  • brings in a new framework for police retention of fingerprints and DNA data, and requires schools to get parents’ consent before processing children’s biometric information
  • introduces a code of practice for surveillance camera systems and provides for judicial approval of certain surveillance activities by local authorities
  • provides for a code of practice to cover officials’ powers of entry, with these powers being subject to review and repeal
  • outlaws wheel-clamping on private land
  • introduces a new regime for police stops and searches under the Terrorism Act 2000 and reduces the maximum pre-charge detention period under that Act from 28 to 14 days
  • restricts the scope of the 'vetting and barring' scheme for protecting vulnerable groups and makes changes to the system of criminal records checks
  • enables those with convictions for consensual sexual relations between men aged 16 or over (which have since been decriminalised) to apply to have them disregarded
  • extends Freedom of Information rights by requiring datasets to be available in a re-usable format
  • repeals provisions (never brought into force) which would have allowed trial without a jury in complex fraud cases
  • removes time restrictions on when marriage or civil partnership ceremonies may take place.

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Related information

Guide to the passage of a Bill

Find out what happens at each stage of a Public Bill’s journey through Parliament with the Passage of a Bill guide.

When does a Bill become law?

Explanation of what happens after Bills have been passed, and when laws may change.

Human rights

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