Legislative assembly

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Legislative assembly is the name given in some countries to either a legislature, or to one of its houses.

The name is used by a number of countries, including member-states of the Commonwealth of Nations and other countries. It is also used by their sub-national divisions, such as the Indian states and union territories, Australian states and Canadian provinces.

Legislative assemblies in the Commonwealth[edit]

Legislative assemblies in modern-day Commonwealth countries, either as national or sub-national parliaments, are in most cases an evolution of one of the legislative chambers of the previous colonial parliaments, whether the full legislature or a lower house. In a number of jurisdictions, the name House of Assembly is used instead. It is one of the main names used in everyday speech for parliament in many countries.


The lower houses of the parliaments of the Australian states of New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia are called legislative assemblies. In contrast, the state of Queensland has abolished the former upper house of its parliament, leaving the legislative assembly as the sole chamber. The sole house of parliament in the Australian Capital Territory is the legislative assembly.


In Canada, seven of the ten provinces and all three of the territories style their legislatures as legislative assemblies. All are unicameral. Manitoba was the first to abolish its Legislative Council in 1876. British Columbia and Newfoundland and Labrador abolished their Councils before becoming provinces. There was no Council for Alberta when it was created in 1905. The Legislative Assembly of Quebec was renamed the Quebec National Assembly as part of the abolition of the Legislative Council of Quebec on December 31, 1968.


In India, the lower house or only house of each constituent state legislature is called the State Legislative Assembly. The same name is also used for the only house of the legislatures for three of the Union territories, Delhi, Jammu and Kashmir and Puducherry. The upper house in the six states with a bicameral legislature is called the State Legislative Council, or Vidhan Parishad. Members of the former are called MLAs, and those of the latter MLCs.


In Malaysia, the unicameral parliaments of the 13 individual states are known as Dewan Undangan Negeri ("state legislative assembly").

Former legislative assemblies[edit]

In Mauritius, the unicameral Parliament was known as the legislative assembly until 1992, when, following the establishment of a republic, it was renamed the National Assembly.

Legislative assemblies outside the Commonwealth[edit]

Legislative Assembly is the name given to the national legislatures (or one of the houses of the national legislature) of the sovereign nations of Bolivia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Samoa, and Tonga as well as formerly of Thailand, South Sudan, Kyrgyzstan and Revolutionary France. It is also the name of the legislative bodies of the U.S. state of Oregon and U.S. territory of Puerto Rico. The legislatures of the States of Brazil are called "legislative assembly", as are the legislatures of the two insular autonomous regions of Portugal, Azores and Madeira, respectively the Legislative Assembly of the Azores and the Legislative Assembly of Madeira.

See also[edit]