Voting by proxy

If you are unable to get to the polling station on election day you can apply to appoint someone you trust (a 'proxy') to vote on your behalf.

An emergency proxy may be granted after the deadline in certain circumstances.

Your chosen proxy can apply for a postal proxy vote if needed.

Check you're eligible

You must be individually registered to vote before you can apply for a proxy vote.

You can apply for a proxy vote if you:

  • will be away from home on polling day, for example on holiday
  • cannot go to the polling station due to a physical condition, or employment or educational commitments
  • are a British Citizen living overseas
  • are a Crown Servant or a member of the armed forces.

You may need someone to support the reason for your application to confirm that it is valid, such as a doctor or your employer.

Choose who to appoint as proxy

Your proxy must be registered individually themselves, and also be eligible to vote in the election. They cannot be proxy for more than two people who are not family members.


To let us know that you would like to vote by proxy:

  1. Download a vote by proxy (for a particular election)(pdf, 23KB) or vote by proxy (long term)(pdf, 37KB) application form
  2. Print, complete, sign, and return to Electoral Services. You must sign your application form personally because we need a copy of your signature for voting security reasons.

If you cannot print the above form, contact Electoral Services and a form will be posted to you.

The deadline for applying to vote by proxy is 6 working days before an election however you can apply at any time.

Emergency proxy

If you become aware of a medical or employment emergency after the deadline for applying for a proxy vote which means you cannot go to the polling station in person, you can apply to vote by emergency proxy up to 5pm on polling day.

  1. Download a medical emergency proxy (pdf, 499 KB) or employment emergency proxy (pdf, 496 KB) application form.
  2. Print, complete, sign, and return to Electoral Services by email at or in person to York House reception, Twickenham.

Postal proxy vote

If your proxy cannot attend your polling station in person for any reason on the day of the election, they can apply to vote by post.

To apply for a postal proxy, both the proxy and the elector will need to complete a form. Please note that if your proxy has been allocated a postal proxy you will not be able to vote at the polling station, even if your proxy has not yet voted.

  1. Download the postal proxy (pdf, 21 KB) application form.
  2. Print, complete, sign and return to Electoral Services by email at or in person to York House reception, Twickenham.

Cancel your proxy vote

To cancel your proxy vote you must write to the Electoral Registration Officer (by post, fax, or scanned email attachment in PDF or JPG format).

This must be received by 5pm, 11 working days before an election for it to be valid.

This is also the deadline to make changes to an existing proxy vote including changing your proxy vote to a postal vote.


If you have any questions get in touch with the Electoral Services team.

Updated: 13 December 2019