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Volunteer Information Pack Update: The Scottish Lobbying Register

In 2016 the Scottish Parliament voted to create a Lobbying Register, designed to make interactions between organisations like the IFoA and Scottish Policymakers more accountable. The law now requires all activities that meet the definition of ‘regulated lobbying’ to be recorded, and if you come into contact with Scottish Policymakers or their staff, you may have to let the Public Affairs Team know. Make sure you are aware of the IFoA’s policy on the register, and what activities need to be logged.

The Scottish Lobbying Register, what you need to know

The Volunteer Information Pack has undergone an update to include requirements for volunteers who may need to register face-to-face interaction undertaken on behalf of the IFoA with Scottish Policymakers. Here is a whistle-stop tour of what you need to know – please refer to the VIP for more details:

  • The Lobbying (Scotland) 2016 Act was passed by the Scottish Parliament in April 2016, and aims to increase transparency of face-to-face contact made between organisations like the IFoA and the Scottish Parliament.
  • This is called ‘regulated lobbying’, and the Act establishes a Register of Lobbyists. The IFoA is required to register all representatives who carry out ‘regulated lobbying’ on its behalf.
  • If you meet with Scottish Policymakers on behalf of the IFoA, you may be required to register your activity, so you should read up on what ‘regulated lobbying’ means (please note that this register applies only to activity that takes place with politicians and their staff in Scotland).

The legal requirement 

The law requires organisations like the IFoA to record, on a website, details of any face-to-face meetings held with:

  • MSPs
  • Scottish Government Ministers
  • Special Advisers
  • The Scottish Government’s Permanent Secretary

Do I need to register my activity?

To help you decide whether your activity should be registered, the Scottish Government has outlined ‘Five Tests’ which may be applied to a situation to see whether it meets the definition of ‘regulated lobbying’. These can be found in the guidance section of the Scottish Government Website.

How do I register my activity?

If you decide you have carried out ‘regulated lobbying’, then you need to let the Public Affairs Team via email as soon as possible.

The email should contain: your name and role, the names and roles of the people you met with, whether it was face-to-face of a video call, the time and date of your contact, the location, a description of what was discussed at the meeting,  and the names and roles of any other IFoA representatives.

If you have any questions, please contact the Public Affairs Team.