The electoral register and the 'open register'

Get on the electoral register

The electoral register (sometimes called the ‘electoral roll’) lists the names and addresses of everyone who’s registered to vote.

Use the register to vote service to:

  • get on the electoral register
  • update your details (for example change your name or address)

To check whether you’re already on the register, contact:

What happens if you do not register

You must register to vote if you’re asked to do so and you meet the conditions for registering, for example you’re 16 or over and you’re British or a national of an EU or Commonwealth country.

If you’re asked to register and do not, you could be fined.

You will not be fined if you have a valid reason for not registering, for example a long stay in hospital, or you have severe learning difficulties.

When you can register in more than one place

It’s sometimes possible to register at 2 addresses (though you can only vote once in any election).

For example, if you’re a student with different home and term-time addresses, you may be able to register at both.

Register twice if you live at 2 addresses.

The annual canvass

From July each year Electoral Registration Offices (EROs) contact households to check if the details on the electoral register are correct. This is called the annual canvass.

You will be contacted by post, email, phone or by someone knocking on your door.