Voting by post
You must apply for a postal vote if you want to vote by post, for example if:
- you’re away from home
- you’re abroad and want to vote in England, Scotland or Wales
You do not need to give a reason unless you’re voting in Northern Ireland.
Apply for a postal vote
You can apply to vote by post for one of the following:
- a single election on a specific date
- a specific period if you want to vote in England, Scotland or Wales
There’s a different form to apply to vote by post in Northern Ireland.
Arrange to vote by proxy if there are under 2 weeks until election day and you have not made arrangements.
Change where your postal vote card is sent
Make a new application for a postal vote if you move house or you’ll be away from home when the postal vote is sent out.
There’s a different form for Northern Ireland.
Completing and returning your postal vote
When voting by post, you should:
- mark your vote on your ballot paper in secret
- fill in the postal voting statement
- put the ballot and statement in the envelope provided
- seal the envelope yourself
Post your ballot back as quickly as possible to make sure it’s counted.
If you’re too late to post your ballot paper
In Northern Ireland, take it to your local Area Electoral Office before they close.
Replace a lost or damaged ballot paper
Your ballot paper needs to clearly display your details and voting choice. If it has been damaged you need to get another one.
You can either:
- ask your local Electoral Registration Office to post a replacement
- collect a replacement from your local Electoral Registration Office up to 5pm on election day (or the day before in Northern Ireland)
You cannot vote at a polling station if you registered to vote by post but your ballot paper was lost or damaged.