The main criteria you must satisfy in order to be registered to vote are:-
Electors must apply for registration at the address at which they currently reside, that being their usual and permanent place of residence and not a temporary residence such as a holiday home. The date on which a person applies to be registered is defined as the 'relevant date'.
A person cannot vote until the day of their eighteenth birthday. When the canvass for a new Register is being undertaken, the names and dates of birth of all persons who will become 18 during the life of the next register are requested.
Persons entitled to be registered are:
- British Citizens
- Other Commonwealth citizens
- Citizens of The Republic Of Ireland
The citizens listed above have, subject to any other statutory restriction, full voting rights at all types of elections.
- Citizens of Other European Union Countries
These citizens are entitled to vote at Scottish Parliamentary and Local Government Elections only, although they may be included in National Referendums. They may also be entitled to vote at European Parliamentary Elections in this country by the completion of a separate application form.
Registration requiring a declaration
Service Electors (HM Forces, Crown Servants & British Council Employees abroad)
Service electors can be registered by making a service declaration every five years, or they can simply register in the same way as any other elector by completing an application.
Links to Local Government and other relevant sites can be accessed via the Contact Details section, which also provides telephone and other details of the Joint Board should you need more information.
This form of registration must be completed annually by a British Citizen who has ceased to be normally resident in the UK and presently resides overseas. Please note that an Overseas Elector cannot vote at Scottish Parliamentary or Local Government Elections.
An Overseas elector requires to satisfy one of the following conditions: -
- The elector was last resident and included in the register at the address claimed for, within the last fifteen years.
- Persons who were too young to be registered before going overseas require to produce a copy of their birth certificate and give their parents or guardians name and registration address.
Declaration of Local Connection
Legislation introduced, in February 2001, recognised "notional residence" which can be applicable to the Homeless, Mental Health Patients or Remand Prisoners. Each must make an annual declaration in order to be included in the Register.
- Homeless People - a person can make a declaration to be registered at any place where they spend a substantial part of their time, day or night or for the address nearest that place. This could be, for example, a day centre or any other place where a person habitually resides.
- Mental Health Patients & Remand Prisoners - such persons can be registered at the institution where they are resident; an address where they would otherwise be living or an address where they have previously lived.
Copies of the above forms are available from our downloads section.