Next month, millions of people will go the polls to decide which political party should lead the UK.
But thousands of people could miss out on their chance to vote because they’re on holiday, or they’re living overseas.
However, many of these issues could be solved if people applied to vote by proxy.
But what is a proxy vote and how do you apply?
What is a proxy vote?
A proxy vote is used when you are unable to vote for yourself in person. Instead, you can chose someone to vote on your behalf - a proxy.
Who is eligible to vote by proxy?
Anyone who is registered to vote can apply to vote by proxy. However, you must also fill one of the following criteria:
- You are away (e.g. on holiday)
- You are disabled and cannot go to the polling station
- You are working
- You are on a course
- You’re a British citizen living overseas
- You’re in the armed forces and you are serving overseas
- You are a Crown servant or a British Council employee and are working away
Who can act as a proxy?
Anyone who is registered to vote and is over the age of 18 can act as a proxy.
However, a person cannot act as proxy for more than two people in one election, unless they are a close relative.
How do I register to vote by proxy?
To register for a proxy vote, you must visit Gov.uk and download a form. There are several different forms depending on the reason you need a proxy vote.
On the form, you must specify who will act as your proxy on the day of the vote.
After completing and signing the form, you must send it to your local electoral registration office.
To find out the contact details of your local authority, visit Your Vote Matters and use the search tool.
What is the deadline to register to vote by proxy?
The deadline to apply for a proxy vote in the General Election is Wednesday May 31 in England, Scotland and Wales.
In Northern Ireland, the deadline is Thursday May 18.
How do I vote by proxy?
After registering for a proxy vote, your proxy will be sent a proxy polling card, which will tell them which polling station to vote at and when.
You must tell your proxy which candidate or party you want them to vote for on your behalf.
They will then be able to vote as normal on your behalf.
However, if for some reason you are able to go the polling station on the day of the vote, you will still be able to vote as long as your proxy has not already done so on your behalf.