Khalid Mahmood was born on 13 July 1961 in Azad Kashmir, Pakistan. He studied at UCE Birmingham.
Mahmood is a former engineer with a trade union background. He was a Birmingham City Councillor from 1990 to 1993.
Mahmood was elected as the MP for Birmingham Perry Barr in the 2001 general election, becoming the first Muslim MP in England. He held his seat at the 2005 general election. In November 2005 he was appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Tony McNulty, then a minister in the Home Office. He resigned in September 2006 along with several colleagues after signing a letter calling for Tony Blair to resign as prime minister.
In May 2009, it was reported, as part of a series of leaked UK MPs expense details, that Mahmood claimed for £1,350 to stay in a five-star west London hotel with his girlfriend. He also claimed more than £35,000 in expenses for food over eight years.
He was again elected in the 2010 general election. Mahmood opposed the decision by Birmingham College in 2013 to ban students wearing veils. In January 2015, he was nominated for the Politician of the Year award at the British Muslim Awards.
Mahmood was re-elected at the 2015 general election. He was appointed as shadow Europe minister in October 2016. He was re-elected at the 2017 general election and the 2019 general election. In December 2019, Mahmood announced that he would stand in the 2020 Labour Party deputy leadership election.
In January 2014, Mahmood underwent a kidney transplant at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Edgbaston, Birmingham, receiving an organ from a donor later revealed to be the Labour politician Siôn Simon. He had been on dialysis, following kidney failure in 2008. His twin brother had previously died from kidney failure.
Mahmood is a member of Unite the Union.