Voting by proxy

Frequently asked questions on casting your vote by proxy at elections in the UK. Voting by proxy means asking someone you trust to case your vote on your behalf.

On this page you can find the answers to frequently asked questions about voting by proxy at an election or referendum.

Anyone who is registered to vote can apply for a proxy vote.

To check if you're correctly registered, contact the local authority of the address you are registered to.

Find contact details for your local authority

When you apply for a proxy vote you must 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

In Northern Ireland, visit the Electoral Office for Northern Ireland website.

The deadline to apply to vote by proxy at the UK general election on Thursday 8 June is 5pm on Wednesday 31 May.

If you are suddenly incapacitated, you can apply to vote by proxy for medical reasons up until polling day. All applications must be received before 5pm on the specified day.

In addition, you can also apply for an emergency proxy up until 5pm on polling day if your occupation, service or employment means that you cannot go to the polling station in person, and you only become aware of that fact after 5pm, six working days before polling day.

Download an application form to vote by proxy from our page on voting by proxy

The person you wish to appoint as your proxy can only act as proxy if they are 18 or over (16 or over in Scotland at Scottish Parliamentary and local government elections only) and they are (or will be) registered for that election or referendum

A person cannot be a proxy for more than two people at any one election or referendum, unless they are a close relative.

You can apply to vote by emergency proxy up until 5pm on polling day if your occupation, service or employment means that you cannot go to the polling station in person.

This is only if you only became aware of that fact after 5pm, six working days before polling day.

Find out more about voting by proxy

Your proxy must go to your local polling place to vote.

Your proxy will be sent a proxy poll card, telling them where and when to vote.

You must let your proxy know how you want them to vote on your behalf, for example, for which candidate or party.

If your proxy cannot get to the polling place, they can apply to vote for you by post. They can apply to do this up to 5pm, 11 working days before election day. Your electoral registration office can give you more details about this.

Find contact details for your local authority

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.

It's very simple to vote as someone's proxy. You will be sent a special proxy poll card with details of where you should go to vote.

Just tell the staff at the polling station 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 place staff to find the right ballot paper.

If you can't attend the polling place, you can vote by post. You must apply for this postal vote before 5pm 11 working days before polling day. Contact your local electoral registration office to find out how to do this.

Find contact details for your local authority