If you cannot go the polling station in person, and you do not want a postal vote, then you can appoint a proxy to cast your vote for you.You can apply for a proxy vote if you have been Individually Registered as an Elector. When you apply for a proxy vote you may have to provide a reason. You can apply for a proxy vote if:
- you are unable to go to the polling station for one particular election, for example, if you are away on holiday
- you have a physical condition that means you cannot go to the polling station on election day
- your employment means that you cannot go to the polling station on election day
- your attendance on an educational course means that you cannot go to the polling station on election day
- you are a British citizen living overseas
- you are a crown servant or a member of Her Majesty's Armed Forces
- the photo ID you intended to use becomes unavailable
Except if you are registered blind, you may have to get someone to support your application to confirm that your reason for applying to vote by proxy is valid. Please read the notes that accompany the application form to find out if you need to get someone to support your application and who can do it.
Applying to vote by proxy
The deadline for applying to vote by proxy is normally 6 working days before an election. However, if you have a medical emergency, your photo ID becomes unavailable or if your occupation, service or employment means that you cannot attend the polling station, then you can apply to vote by emergency proxy up until 5:00pm on the day of the poll.
Appointing your proxy
Anyone can be your proxy as long as they are registered as an elector, eligible to vote in the election and they are willing to vote on your behalf. You cannot be a proxy for more than two domestic electors and two overseas electors, or a total of four overseas electors.
How to apply online for a proxy vote
To apply online you will need:
- your National Insurance number or any other identity document, for example a birth certificate
- the address where your proxy is registered to vote
- contact details for your proxy
You’ll also need to upload a photo of your handwritten signature in black ink on plain white paper.
You can apply online for a proxy vote using the link below.
Downloadable application forms
Vote by proxy for a particular election, (PDF, 461KB) - use this form for a "one-off" proxy
Voting by proxy after the application deadline
You can vote by proxy if you are incapacitated, taken ill, away for work reasons or have lost your Voter ID after the proxy deadline.
You can apply to vote by emergency proxy for certain medical, employment or loss of Voter ID reasons up until 5pm on polling day.
Giving your date of birth and signature on a postal or proxy vote application
The Electoral Administration Act 2006 introduced new measures to improve the security of postal and proxy votes. From 1 January 2007 all postal and proxy voters in England and Wales will be required to give their date of birth and signature when applying for a postal or proxy vote.
Being the proxy for someone else
It's very simple to vote as someone's proxy. You will be sent a special proxy poll card letter with details of where you should go to vote.
If you can't attend the polling station you can vote by post. Contact us to find out how to do this.
If you are going to the polling station, just tell the staff there that you are voting as a proxy and they will tell you what to do. Don't forget to take your proxy poll card – this will make it easier for polling station staff to assist you.
Information for voting by proxy
- Your proxy must go to your local polling station to vote. If your proxy cannot get to the polling station, they can apply to vote for you by post. They can apply to do this up to 11 working days before Election Day. Contact us for more details about this.
- Your proxy will be sent a proxy poll card letter, telling them where and when to vote.
- You must let your proxy know how you want them to vote on your behalf, for example, which candidate or which party.
- If you are able to go to the polling station on Election Day, you can still vote in person as long as your proxy has not already done so or has not applied to vote by post for you.