Engrossment, Enrollment, and Presentation of Legislation Page: 1 of 3
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Order Code 98-826 GOV
Updated March 24, 2008
CRS Report for Congress
Engrossment, Enrollment, and
Presentation of Legislation
R. Eric Petersen
Analyst in American National Government
Government and Finance Division
Engrossment, enrollment, and presentation of legislation are components of the
legislative process' that attest to the accuracy of bill texts, confirm House and Senate
action, and confirm delivery of the bills to the President for review.2
Engrossment. When either house orders the third reading of a bill, it
simultaneously orders the engrossment of the bill. Engrossment is the formal reprinting
of the bill in the form upon which the chamber will vote final passage.3 House and Senate
Rules require that all bills, amendments, and joint resolutions passed in each chamber
must be examined by the Clerk of the House or Secretary of the Senate, as appropriate.4
Official engrossed copies are prepared by staff in the Office of the Clerk of the House and
the Office of the Secretary of the Senate. The clerk or secretary are required to attest to
the accuracy of the engrossed text by signing the measures.' The House-engrossed
measures, including amendments to bills passed by the Senate, are printed on blue paper;
the Senate prints its engrossed measures on white paper. If either chamber later discovers
errors in one of its engrossed measures, it may adopt a resolution formally requesting the
other chamber to return the engrossed bill or resolution to it for correction.
An engrossed bill is "messaged" by the originating house to the other; the second
chamber to act attaches the text of whatever amendments it adopts to the original measure
it has received from the first.
For more information on legislative process, see [http://www.crs.gov/products/guides/
2 This report was written by Paul S. Rundquist, formerly a Specialist in American National
Government at CRS, who has retired. The listed author updated the report and is available to
answer questions concerning its contents.
3In earlier times, such bills were handwritten in very large script, hence the term "engrossment."
4 House Rule II, cl. (2)(d)(2); and Senate Rule XIV, cl. 5.
5 1 U.S.C. 106.
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Engrossment, Enrollment, and Presentation of Legislation, report, March 24, 2008; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc815019/m1/1/: accessed September 23, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.