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The Guide to MPs’ Business Costs and Expenses

A day-to-day guide for MPs and their staff on managing budgets, what to claim and how to claim


Guidance for MPs' Business Costs and Expenses (updated August 2015)


In performing their parliamentary functions, MPs incur a range of business costs and expenses. These include the costs of working both in Westminster and in their constituencies. MPs whose constituencies are outside the London area need to travel between their constituency and Westminster.

They need accommodation in one of these two places. All MPs need a constituency office and staff to run it. They are reimbursed for these essential costs, or in some cases, IPSA will pay the provider of the goods or services directly on the MP’s behalf. The MPs' Scheme of Business Costs and Expenses sets out the rules for meeting these costs. The Eighth Edition of the Scheme came into operation on 1 April 2016 for 2016-17. This guidance summarises key aspects of the Scheme and puts it into context for MPs so it’s clearer how it applies to their day-to-day work.

This guidance concentrates on how MPs can make claims, pay costs directly, manage budgets and pay their staff. It also covers the process of how IPSA publishes claims, so that taxpayers can see how their money is spent in support of MPs' parliamentary functions.

Where more detailed information may be needed by MPs and their staff – for example, on how to use the online claims system – this can be found in our How To Guides.

As well as helping MPs and their staff, we hope that this guidance will give members of the public an insight into the costs and processes involved in supporting MPs in the performance of their parliamentary functions.

This guidance will evolve as circumstances change and will be kept fully up to date. You can contact IPSA's MP Support Team for further information. You can call us between 10am and 5pm, every working day, on 020 7811 6400 or email us at