1997–2010: The District of South Staffordshire wards of Bilbrook, Brewood and Coven, Cheslyn Hay, Codsall North, Codsall South, Essington, Featherstone, Great Wyrley Landywood, Great Wyrley Town, Kinver, Lower Penn, Pattingham and Patshull, Perton Central, Perton Dippons, Shareshill, Swindon, Trysull and Seisdon, Wombourne North, Wombourne South East, and Wombourne South West.
2010–present: The District of South Staffordshire wards of Bilbrook, Brewood and Coven, Cheslyn Hay North and Saredon, Cheslyn Hay South, Codsall North, Codsall South, Essington, Featherstone and Shareshill, Great Wyrley Landywood, Great Wyrley Town, Himley and Swindon, Huntington and Hatherton, Kinver, Pattingham and Patshull, Perton Dippons, Perton East, Perton Lakeside, Trysull and Seisdon, Wombourne North and Lower Penn, Wombourne South East, and Wombourne South West.
The present South Staffordshire constituency was established in 1983, although in reality this was merely a renaming of the Staffordshire South West constituency formed in 1974 from parts of the former constituencies of Brierley Hill and Cannock. It covered the whole of the South Staffordshire district until 1997, when the area around Penkridge was included in the Stafford constituency.
On 30 April 2005, the Liberal Democrat candidate Josephine Harrison died of an undisclosed illness at the age of 53. Election procedures at the time required that in the event of a candidate's death after the close of nominations, the returning officer had to direct the general election poll (due to be held on 5 May) to be abandoned, and to call a fresh general election poll. This was duly done under the same writ of election, 28 days after having seen proof of death. As the poll was not strictly a by-election, but rather a part of the general election, it was run under general election regulations; for instance, not qualifying for the significantly higher election expenses available at by-elections.
On 9 May, the Labour candidate, Penny Barber, announced that she was standing down as she could not afford to take any more time off work. The constituency Labour Party had to select a new candidate, choosing Paul Kalinauckas who had been their candidate in the 2001 election. The Liberal Democrats selected Jo Crotty as their replacement candidate. In addition, three additional candidates who had not been nominated for the original poll fought the delayed election: Kate Spohrer of the Green Party, Rev. David Braid of Clause 28 Children's Protection Christian Democrats, and most notably the journalist Garry Bushell representing the English Democrats Party, who had already stood in the Greenwich and Woolwich constituency on 5 May, where he had polled 3.4%.
The election was eventually held on 23 June 2005 and saw Sir Patrick Cormack hold the seat. With the seat being safely Conservative, and with the results of the general election in other constituencies already known, the election attracted a considerably lower turnout (37.3%) than in other constituencies (akin to a by-election). Cormack increased his majority to 34.5% (a 9.1% swing), while the United Kingdom Independence Party saw one of their best results of 2005, with 10.4% of the vote.
A year later. the Electoral Administration Act 2006 was passed in part because of the events in South Staffordshire.
Under the new rules, in case of the death of a candidate, the party of the dead candidate is allowed to select a replacement candidate. New nominations from parties which did not contest the original pool are no longer permitted. This rule was first used in the 2010 general election when the UKIP candidate for Thirsk and Malton died before the election.