Enrolled-Bill Rule Law and Legal Definition
Enrolled bill rule provides that if a legislative document is authenticated in regular form by the appropriate officials, the courts treat that document as properly adopted.Ordinarily, the courts will not go behind the enrolled bill to determine its validity. The Supreme Court can look behind the enrolled bill only to determine whether the constitutional mandate relative to vote and journal entry upon the final passage have been complied with.
The "enrolled-bill rule" precludes a court from looking beyond the signatures of House and Senate leaders in determining the validity of a statute. The District of Columbia Circuit recently explained the rule thus: It is not competent for a party challenging the validity of a statute to show, from the journals of either house, from the reports of committees or from other documents printed by authority of Congress, that an enrolled bill differs from that actually passed by Congress. The only evidence upon which a court may act when the issue is made as to whether a bill asserted to have become a law, was or was not passed by Congress is an enrolled act attested to by declaration of the two houses, through their presiding officers. An enrolled bill, thus attested, is conclusive evidence that it was passed by Congress. The enrollment itself is the record, which is conclusive as to what the statute is. [United States v. Farmer, 583 F.3d 131, 151-152 (2d Cir. N.Y. 2009)]