Voting by proxy
You can request a proxy vote if you want someone else to vote on your behalf because you can't get to your polling station on polling day.
Proxy voting is where you appoint someone to go to the polling station and vote on your behalf. Your proxy is then intended to vote in the way you direct. Unlike postal voting, proxy voting other than for one election is restricted to certain categories of people.
Who can apply for a proxy vote
You can apply for a proxy vote if you cannot get to the polling station if:
- You cannot make it to the polling station due to a disability
- You will be away on an educational course on polling day
- You will be away for your work on polling day
- You are registered as an overseas voter you can appoint someone else to vote at a UK election or referendum for you
- You are away working for the British Council or as a Crown servant you can appoint someone else to vote at a UK election or referendum for you
- You are serving overseas in the armed forces you can appoint someone else to vote at a UK election or referendum for you
Apply for a proxy vote
To apply for a proxy vote, both you and your proxy must be registered to vote.
You will need to complete and sign a proxy vote application form.
We have put together some guidance notes to help you.
You should then send it to:
You can appoint a proxy for an indefinite or for a specified period.
If you are unable to vote in person for a particular election or referendum, for example you are on holiday, you can get someone to vote on your behalf at your local polling station. If you would like to apply for a permanent proxy vote due to employment, disability or living overseas reasons please use the proxy voting application forms on GOV.UK.
All forms should be returned to the Electoral Registration Officer.
After you have applied
We will let both you and your proxy know if your proxy vote application has been successful, though there may not always be enough time to do this just before an election.
We will then send a proxy poll card to the person you nominated with details of how to vote.
It's possible to appoint someone to vote for you by post. Such a person is called a postal proxy. The circumstances in which you can do so are as set out above. Applications must be made by 5pm, 11 working days before polling day.
If your application for a proxy vote is accepted, you can still vote in person at your polling station as long as you do so before your proxy votes for you. However if you appoint someone as a proxy to vote by post for you then you cannot vote in person.
If you are not able to attend the polling station in person for reasons relating to your occupation, service, employment or a medical emergency, and you only become aware of this after 5pm, on the sixth working day before a poll, you can apply to vote by emergency proxy (someone else voting on your behalf). If you meet the eligibility criteria, you can apply up until 5pm on the day of the poll by completing the relevant form and returning to email@example.com.
► Find out more about how to vote on the Your Vote Matters website.
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