Registering to vote and new voter ID requirements

UK Parliamentary General Election – Thursday 4 July 2024

The UK Parliamentary General Election is on Thursday 4 July.  

  • If you are not already registered to vote, you have until Tuesday 18 June to register in time for this election. 
  • If you would like a postal vote or need to make changes to your current absent voting arrangements, you have until 5pm on Wednesday 19 June to apply. 
  • If you would like to arrange for a proxy (someone to vote on your behalf), you have until 5pm on Wednesday 26 June to apply. 
  • If you do not have a valid form of photographic ID, you have until 5pm on Wednesday 26 June to apply.

Your vote matters

Don’t miss out on having your say – make sure you are registered to vote! If you don’t register for upcoming elections before the given deadline, you won’t be able to vote at the polling station. You could end up with an £80 fine if you fail to respond to requests for information from the electoral register.

Did you know: credit reference agencies use the Electoral Register to prevent fraud when people apply for credit, so it’s never a bad idea to be registered!

Voter ID required for voting at elections

The Elections Act 2022 introduced the requirement for voters in Great Britain to show photo identification to vote in polling stations at elections. Voters who do not produce valid photo identification or a Voter Authority Certificate will not be allowed to vote in person on the day.

Find out which forms of photo identification will be accepted.

How to register to vote

Registering to vote has never been easier. The form is simple to complete – just fill in your name, address, date of birth, nationality, your National Insurance number if you have one and a few other details.

The quickest way to apply is online at Register to vote - GOV.UK

If you don’t have access to the internet you can use computers in local libraries, internet cafes, the Customer Service Centre at the Town Hall or we can send you a paper registration form to fill in and post back. If you need assistance, we can also complete an over-the-phone registration.

Who can register to vote?

Nationality

To qualify you must be a British, Irish or Commonwealth citizen or a citizen of another European Union Member State. Commonwealth citizens must be resident in the UK and either have leave to enter or remain in the UK or not require such leave. The definition of a Commonwealth Citizen includes citizens of British crown dependencies and British Overseas Territories.

Nationality is regarded as passport(s) held (or the right to hold a passport). Indefinite leave to remain does not alter nationality.

European citizens are entitled to vote at the Mayor of London and London Assembly elections but as of Tuesday 7 May new regulations will apply. Find more information on EU citizens' voting and candidacy rights.

 

Eligible nationalities

Commonwealth countries
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Australia
  • Bangladesh
  • Barbados
  • Belize
  • Botswana
  • Brunei Darussalam
  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Cyprus*
  • Dominica
  • Fiji
  • Gabon**
  • Ghana
  • Grenada
  • Guyana
  • India
  • Jamaica
  • Kenya
  • Kingdom of Eswatini
  • Kiribati
  • Lesotho
  • Malawi
  • Malaysia
  • Maldives
  • Malta*
  • Mauritius
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Nauru
  • New Zealand
  • Nigeria
  • Pakistan
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Rwanda
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • Saint Lucia
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Samoa
  • Seychelles
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • Solomon Islands
  • South Africa
  • Sri Lanka
  • The Bahamas
  • The Gambia
  • Togo**
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Tuvalu
  • Uganda
  • United Kingdom
  • United Republic of Tanzania
  • Vanuatu
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

*Although also EU member states, citizens of Cyprus and Malta are eligible to be registered to vote in respect of all elections held in the UK.

**The British Nationality (Eswatini, Gabon and Togo) Order 2023 came into force on the 15th December amending the British Nationality Act 81, adding Togo and Gabon as Commonwealth countries.

Citizens of Commonwealth countries that have been suspended from the Commonwealth retain their voting rights. Their voting rights would only be affected if their country was also deleted from the list of Commonwealth countries in the British Nationality Act 1981 through an Act of the UK Parliament.

British Overseas Territories
  • Anguilla
  • Bermuda
  • British Antarctic Territory
  • British Indian Ocean Territory
  • Cayman Islands
  • Falkland Islands
  • Gibraltar
  • Montserrat
  • Pitcairn, Henderson, Dulcie and Oeno Islands
  • South George and the South Sandwich Islands
  • Sovereign Base areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia on Cyprus
  • St Helena, Ascencion and Tristan da Cunha
  • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • Virgin Islands
British Crown Dependencies
  • Channel Islands
  • Isle of Man
Hong Kong
Only those previous residents of Hong Kong who hold a British Overseas Territories, British Nationals (Overseas) or British Overseas passport meet the nationality criterion for all elections in the UK. Any previous resident of Hong Kong who only has a Chinese Special Administrative Region passport is Chinese and may not register as a qualifying Commonwealth citizen. They may, however, be eligible to register as a qualifying foreign citizen in Scotland and Wales.
European Union citizens
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Cyprus*
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Italy
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Republic of Ireland*
  • The Netherlands

*Citizens of the Republic of Ireland, Cyprus and Malta are eligible to be registered to vote in respect of all elections in the UK.
**Also referred to as Czechia

Age

Only those aged 18 or over can vote but you can register if you are 16 or 17.

Residence

Your primary residence must be in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea when you apply to register. If you split your time between 2 homes, you may be able to register to vote at both addresses. For example, you might own 2 properties and split your time between them, or you might be a student. If you apply to register to vote from your second home, then your application will be looked at on a case-by-case basis. The outcome will depend on the amount of time you spend at each of your addresses. 

You cannot register before moving to an address. 

Different arrangements apply to some electors who do not meet the usual residence qualification. They are known as Special Category Electors. More information can be found below, including how to register if you are a British Citizen living overseas.

Special Category Electors

Voter registration for British Citizens living overseas

British Citizens living abroad can vote in UK Parliamentary General elections only. 

From 16 January 2024 British citizens living abroad (this includes eligible Irish citizens and citizens of the Crown Dependencies) may register as overseas electors, providing they are:
  • A person who was previously registered to vote in the UK, either before they left the UK or as an overseas elector. 
  • A person who was previously resident in the UK (including those who left the UK before they were old enough to register to vote).

Applicants must apply to register as an overseas elector in respect of the address where they were last registered to vote in the UK or, if they have never been registered, the last address at which they were resident in the UK.

If you wish to apply as an overseas elector prior to 16 January 2024 then you must meet the following requirements:

•    You were included in a register of Parliamentary electors before you left the UK within the last 15 years.
•    You were a person who was too young to be included on the register at the time you left the UK within the last 15 years.
 

To apply please visit Register to vote - GOV.UK.

Voter registration for the Armed forces (Service voters)

Members of the armed forces and their partners may register as service voters, or they can register as ordinary electors. If you register as a Service Voter, you will only have to re-register every five years and the Electoral Services team will write to remind you when re-registration is required.

To apply please visit Register to vote - GOV.UK.

Voter registration for Crown Servants

Crown servants working abroad and their partners, can register by completing the Crown servant online application form.

Voter registration for students

If you're a student, you may be able to register to vote at both your home address and your term-time address. However, this does not necessarily mean that you can vote more than once in elections taking place on the same day.

Being registered at both your home address and your term-time addresses doesn't necessarily mean you get two votes.

You will need to choose one address and vote in only that area when you're voting in:

  • UK Parliament elections
  • UK referendums
  • London Assembly and London Mayoral elections.

You can't vote at both your term-time address and your home address at these elections. Voting in more than one location is a criminal offence.

For other elections you can vote at both your term-time and your home address.

You can choose to vote in either or both areas (if the addresses are in different council areas) when you're voting in Local council elections in England and Police and Crime commissioner elections and mayoral elections.

Make sure you understand the rules for the election you are voting in. To apply please visit Register to vote - GOV.UK.

Other voter registration options

For more information about other voting registration options such as registering as a person with no fixed address or you are part of the gypsy or travelling community please visit the Electoral Commission website.

Anonymous registration

If you feel that having your name on the register of electors may put you at risk, you can apply to be entered anonymously.

Some people feel that being on the register could affect their safety. For example, they register anonymously if they are escaping from domestic violence or have a job that requires them to keep their identity private.  

If your application is accepted, your name and address will not be shown. Any person living with you can also apply to vote in this way.

If you are an anonymous elector or you are about to register as one and you wish to vote in person at an election, you will also need to apply for an Anonymous Electors Document ahead of polling day.

How to apply for anonymous registration

You will need to complete a form giving the reason you are applying for anonymous registration.

The law says you must provide documentary evidence in the form of a court order or injunction. Any court order or injunction must be for the protection or the benefit of you or another person in your household.

If you do not have either of these, your application must be supported by one of the following people:

  • a police officer of or above the rank of inspector of any police force in the UK
  • the director general of the Security Service or the National Crime Agency
  • a director of adult social services or children’s services in England or a director of social services in Wales
  • any chief social work officer in Scotland
  • any director of social services of a Health and Social Services Board or executive director of social work of a Health and Social Services Trust in Northern Ireland
  • any medical practitioner who is registered with the General Medical Council
  • any nurse or midwife who is registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council
  • a person who manages a refuge (a ‘refuge’ means accommodation together with a planned programme of therapeutic and practical support for victims of, or those at risk of, domestic abuse or violence)

Nobody else may attest an application for anonymous registration.

For more information please visit Register to vote anonymously or contact the Electoral Services team on 020 7361 3444.

Last updated: 18 June 2024