10 tips to getting your overseas vote ready for June 8th

As a UK citizen you renew your place on the electoral roll every five years.  As a UK citizen living overseas you need to renew your registration every 12 months. As an overseas voter everything takes a bit longer to process.  

It can be challenging to remember all the rules and deadlines you need to follow, and what your options are.  These ten top tips will help get you started.

#1 Check that you are registered to vote

Dig out the last correspondence you received from your local electoral office - it should inform you of your options.  Find out more at the Electoral Commissions voter friendly website: Your vote matters or contact your local electoral office.

#2 Find out the best way to communicate with your local electoral offices  

They all follow the same process, but how they communicate varies between offices.  Your friends may be able to correspond by email whilst you are required to post all of your forms.  Note: Ballot papers are always sent by post.

#3 Double check: Do you need to renew your voter registration this year?  

If you voted in the 2016 EU referendum the electoral office advises that your registration will still be valid.  

#4 Send your postal vote application so that it is received by 5pm, Tuesday 23rd May.  

To avoid delays in transit, send your application off as soon as you are sure you want to vote by post. Keep track of important deadlines.

#5 Find out when you ballot papers will arrive through your letterbox.

Ballot papers are printed and distributed at different times for different electoral offices.  You can check with your local electoral office when they are scheduled to print them.

#6 Complete and return postal votes as soon as you receive them.  

Ballot papers for postal votes take longer to arrive, and longer to return than if you lived in the UK.  

#7 Applications to vote by proxy must be received by 5pm, Wednesday 31st May.  

The ballot papers for a proxy vote will be sent to your nominated proxy. Keep track of important deadlines.

#8  Make sure your proxy knows who you want to vote for, and where they need to cast your vote.  

Your proxy must cast your vote in the electoral area you are eligible to vote in.

#9  Allow extra time for your registration and application forms to be processed.  

Most things take longer when you are an overseas voter - if you papers are sent by post it can take around 2 weeks to receive important documents. Keep track of important deadlines.

#10 Your local electoral office can help you check you have done everything you need to in order to vote in the General Election on June 8th.

If you are unsure of anything to do with your right to vote, how to complete or return your ballot paper of how to nominate a proxy, contact your local electoral office


Do you feel ready to cast your vote?  Check out which candidates are standing for election in your area - simply type your UK postcode into the search box and we’ll tell you everything we know about your constituency, once we know it and are sure we can present it to you in a clear and accurate manner.


If you’re looking for ideas about what you can do whilst you are waiting for your ballot papers to arrive - or maybe you can't vote at all this year - read about what else you can do to make your voice heard.