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How to register to vote

You can register to vote at any time at gov.uk/register-to-vote.

To check whether you are registered to vote i.e. whether you are on the electoral register, you will need to contact your local authority. They will be able to tell you if you are registered. You can find your local authority contact details here.

Am I eligible to register to vote?

Your Age

  • England, Northern Ireland and Wales: You must be 17 years old, or in some cases 16 (although you can only vote when you are 18).
  • Scotland: You must be 15 years old, or in some cases 14. You can vote in local elections and Scottish Parliament elections when you are 16, and elections in the UK and European Parliaments when you are 18.

Your Nationality

  • A UK citizen
  • An Irish citizen resident in the UK
  • A qualifying Commonwealth citizen resident in the UK
  • An EU citizen resident in the UK

The definition of a 'Commonwealth' citizen includes citizens of British Crown Dependencies and British Overseas Territories. You can finda list of Commonwealth countries, British Crown Dependencies and British Overseas Territories here.

British, Irish, and qualifying Commonwealth citizens who are living in the UK can vote in all elections taking place that cover the area where they live.

Citizens of the European Union (who are not Citizens of the Republic of Ireland, Cyprus or Malta) living in the relevant countries, regions or areas of the UK are eligible to vote in:

Note: EU citizens (who are not Citizens of the Republic of Ireland, Cyprus or Malta) are not able to vote in UK Parliament elections. You can find a list of EU countries here.

Do I need to re-register when I move to university?

If you have changed address, you will need to re-register to vote at that address. You can register online any time at gov.uk/register-to-vote.

If you have changed address, your voting preference to vote by post or by proxy will not be carried forward to your new address. You will have to complete a new application to vote by post or by proxy.

Can I register to vote at two different addresses?

Students may be entitled to register at both their home address and their university address, but can only vote once to the same elected chamber or position.

  • If your home and university addresses are in two different local authority areas, you can vote in local elections in both.
  • However, even if you are registered in two areas – at home and at university – you can only vote in one at a general election.

It is a criminal offence to vote twice in a UK general election.

How can I vote by post or by proxy?

You can cast your vote by post in an election or referendum in the UK, or apply to have somene you trust cast your vote for you (vote by proxy).

You can find out more about how to vote by post here.

You can find out more about the eligibility criteria for, and application to, cast your vote by proxy here.

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