Unable to vote in person
If you are unable to get to the polling station on election day, you can apply for either a postal or proxy vote.
How to apply
There are two ways to apply:
- Paper form (download, print and complete an application form)
Filling in your application
Instructions on how to complete the application correctly are provided on both the online and paper forms.
You will need to provide your date of birth, National Insurance (NI) number and signature on your application form. These are used to confirm your identity when you vote by post.
If you are unable to provide your NI number, you will be required to provide additional forms of identification. Please contact the elections team on 020 8825 7777 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.
Submitting your completed online application
If you are applying online, you need to complete the application in one go and follow the instructions provided by the government portal to submit your application.
Submitting your completed paper application
If you are applying using a paper application form, once you have completed the form and made sure you have signed it, you need to post it to the Elections office, Greenford Hall, Ruislip Road, Greenford UB6 9QN.
You must submit your application by 5pm, 11 working days before the poll.
Your ballot paper will be sent to you at your home or another specified address before an election. You can hold a postal vote for a particular election or for a maximum period of three years.
Ballot papers can be sent to addresses in the UK or overseas and will be despatched around 10 days before polling day. Your ballot paper must reach us before polling stations close on election day to be counted. If you are overseas and wish to vote by post we suggest you apply as early as possible in order to allow for international postal schedules. If you are applying late it may be better to appoint a proxy to vote on your behalf.
Postal votes can be sent to or handed in at the Electoral services office, Ruislip Road, Greenford UB6 9QN or at any polling station within the electoral area on election day.
Proxy vote for a particular election
If you know that you won’t be able to get to the polling station on polling day, you can ask someone you trust to cast your vote on your behalf. This is called a proxy vote and the person casting your vote is often referred to as your proxy.
The person voting on your behalf can either go to your polling station to cast your vote or can apply to vote on your behalf by post.
When completing the application, you need to give a reason why you can’t get to your polling station in person. This may be because you’re going to be on holiday, away with work, or are unable to get to your polling station on polling day due to a disability.
When applying for a new proxy vote, you must return your proxy vote application form by 5pm, 6 working days before the poll.
A permanent or long-term Proxy vote
If you won’t be able to go to the polling station for the foreseeable future, or a long period of time, the application form you need to complete depends on the reason why you need a proxy vote.
If you require a permanent or long-term proxy application, please contact the elections team by email email@example.com or on 020 8825 7777.
There is a limit to the amount of people someone can be a proxy for. You can act as a proxy for two people. If you vote on behalf of UK voters who live overseas, you can act as a proxy for up to four people (but only two of those can live in the UK).
An elector may find that they are unable to go to the polling station after the deadline for arranging an ordinary proxy has passed. An elector may appoint an emergency proxy to vote on their behalf at the polling station in certain circumstances. For further information on applying for an emergency proxy, please contact the elections team by email firstname.lastname@example.org or on 020 8825 7777.