Scots urged to be aware of general election voting rules and deadlines

Glasgow, Scotland – May 23, 2024:

Advice Direct Scotland (ADS) has urged people to be aware of the voting rules for the upcoming general election, with the registration deadline already less than four weeks away.

ADS said people who are intending to cast a vote in the election on July 04 must register before midnight on Tuesday, June 18.

It is also reminding Scots who will be abroad on holiday on the day of the election, or supporting the national team at Euro 2024 in Germany, that they can switch to a postal or proxy vote.

To be allowed to vote, people must be aged 18 or over on the day of the election and be a British citizen, a qualifying Commonwealth citizen or a citizen of the Republic of Ireland.

They must also have registered to vote ahead of time, which they can do online on the UK Government’s website using their national insurance number.

Once someone is registered to vote, they can either vote in person at a polling station, cast a postal vote or assign a proxy voter to fill out a ballot on their behalf.

Postal voting is usually suitable for those who know that they are going to be away from home on the day of election, either elsewhere in the UK or abroad.

People who want to vote by post can do so by applying online on the UK Government website, or by filling in a postal form. The deadline is 5pm on June 19.

Proxy voting is available to those who are away on polling day, are registered as overseas voters, have medical issues or disabilities, or are unavailable due to work or military service.

The person casting the vote in their name will have to be registered to vote in the election. They should also be known to and trusted by the person they are representing.

People who would like to vote by proxy can apply online on the UK Government website, or by post. The deadline to do so is 5pm on June 26.

For the first time at a UK general election, people voting at a polling station will also need to show photo identification.

Valid forms of ID include:

  • a UK or Northern Ireland photocard driving licence (full or provisional)
  • a driving licence issued by an EU country, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, the Isle of Man or any of the Channel Islands
  • a UK passport
  • a passport issued by an EU country, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein or a Commonwealth country.
  • a full list of acceptable ID is available on the UK Government website.

People who do not have any form of photo ID can apply for a Voter Authority Certificate for free, through the UK Government website. The deadline to do this is 5pm on June 26.

Andrew Bartlett, Chief Executive of Advice Direct Scotland, said:

“Rishi Sunak’s decision to call a general election on July 4 has taken a lot of people by surprise, so it’s important that Scots are prepared and not caught out by voting rules.

Scots urged to be aware of general election voting rules and deadlines

“The key things for people to remember is that they have to be on the electoral register to cast a vote and will need to bring a suitable form of ID with them to the polling station.

“Given that this is a summer election and takes place during the school holidays, thousands of people will also be abroad on polling day – but this doesn’t mean they can’t vote.

“We would urge holidaymakers and members of the Tartan Army who will be in Germany for Euro 2024 to switch to a postal or proxy ballot, so they can still exercise their democratic rights.”

Media Enquiries

Marc Roseblade - Head of Content, Media & Marketing

Marc Roseblade

Head of Content, Media and Marketing , Advice Direct Scotland
m: 07542 027083
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a: Mercantile Chambers, 39 ‑ 69 Bothwell Street, Glasgow, G2 6TS

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