Voting by post

 

  • Who can apply for a postal vote?

    Anyone who is registered to vote can apply to vote by post.

  • How do I get a postal vote?

    You can download a postal vote application form here. Fill it in and return it to you local electoral registration office.

  • For what period does my postal vote last?

    You can apply for just one election, for a specific time period, or for a permanent postal vote.

  • How long would it take my postal ballot paper to arrive with my local authority?

    The earliest that postal ballots can be sent out is after 5pm 12 working days before polling day. This is because 5pm 11 working days before polling day is the deadline for new applications to vote by post. Sometimes postal ballots are sent out as late as 4 working days before polling day. You should consider whether this is enough time for you to receive and return your ballot paper.

    To find out when your postal ballot papers will arrive contact your local elections office. You can find the contact details by entering the postcode into the Your local area section on the homepage.

  • How secure is a postal vote?

    It is an offence to complete a postal vote that is not your own, and to influence how others complete their postal vote. If you have any allegations of fraud, they should be referred to the police.

  • Do I need to register to vote if I am applying for an absent vote (postal or proxy)?

    You need to be registered to vote before you apply for an absent vote. This applies to all voters, including overseas and service voters.
  • I've spoiled my ballot paper or postal voting statement. What do I do?

    You can get a replacement up until 5pm on election day. You must pick it up in person from your Returning Officer. You will also need to return your spoilt ballot paper and the other parts of the ballot pack that were sent to you.

  • I've lost my postal or ballot paper. What do I do?

    You can get a replacement ballot paper in person from your Returning Officer up until 5pm on election day.

  • If I have applied for a postal vote, can I still vote at the polling station?

    If you have applied to vote by post, you cannot vote in person at the polling station. However, on election day you can return you postal vote to the polling station (before 10pm) or to your the Returning Officer at your local council (before they close) if you do not want to post it or it is too late to post it. Contact the Returning Officer at your local council to find out where your polling station is.

  • Why haven't I received my postal ballot paper?

    You should receive your postal ballot about one week before the election. If it doesn't arrive, you can get a replacement ballot paper in person from your Returning Officer up until 5pm on election day.

  • Why do I need to give my date of birth and signature to get a postal or proxy vote?

    The Electoral Administration Act 2006 introduced new measures to improve the security of postal and proxy votes.

    All postal and proxy voters are required to give their date of birth and signature when applying for a postal or proxy vote.

    Special provision can be made for those who are unable to sign the form. For more information please contact your local Electoral Registration Officer for more information.

    Your signature and date of birth are separated from your ballot paper before being checked. Giving this information will not affect the secrecy of your vote.

  • Can I use the form to cancel an existing postal vote?

    To cancel your postal vote you need to contact your local electoral registration officer. You can find the contact details by entering the postcode into the Your local area section on the homepage.

  • I’m living outside the UK, which address should I include on my postal vote application form?

    You will need to include the address where you were last registered to vote whilst you were in the UK. There is section on the form for your correspondence address, you can include your overseas address in this section.

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