Voting if you live abroad - Votes for Life

The 15-year residence limit for British citizens living overseas has now been removed. This means that any British citizen living abroad who has previously lived in or been registered to vote in the UK now has the right to vote at UK Parliamentary elections — regardless of when they left the UK

Voting by post

As an overseas elector, you can apply to vote by post or by proxy (someone voting on your behalf). 

As Parliamentary elections can be called at short notice, we strongly advise that you apply for a proxy vote rather than a postal vote.

Due to the short time frame in which Parliamentary elections are called and conducted, we cannot guarantee that you will receive your postal vote in time for you to complete and return it to us by the 10pm deadline on polling day. 

The quickest way to apply to vote by post is online through GOV.UK.

Apply to vote by post

You’ll need to provide:

  • your National Insurance number
  • a photograph of your signature. 

If you do not have a National Insurance number, you can provide a different kind of evidence of your identity.

Get a paper postal voting application form sent to you

If you cannot apply online, you can ask for a paper postal voting application form to be sent to you. We’ll send a freepost reply envelope for you to return your completed form in.