Are you ready to vote?

The UK general election has been called for Thursday 4th July 2024. This is often a time when people are away on holiday and students have recently returned from Uni. If you want to vote in this election there are a few things you might want to consider.

  • Are you registered to vote?
  • Are you registered in the correct place/s?
  • Do you have a suitable photo ID to vote in person?
  • Do you need to apply for a postal vote?

Voter registration.
You must be registered in order to vote. In Scotland, those over age 14 can register to vote but must be age 18 to vote in a UK general election. You can register to vote online here. https://www.gov.uk/register-to-vote

Is your address correct? Have you moved house recently? Have the students in your household registered at their home address or Uni or both? You can use the online service to update your details. Students can find out about their voting rights and registration here https://www.nus.org.uk/register-to-vote

Photo ID
You must show photo ID. Since the recent change to the law (Elections Act 2022) voters in UK general parliamentary elections need to show photo ID in order to vote. There are many forms of accepted photo ID. The Electoral Commission have a comprehensive list here (Make sure you select the SCOTLAND tab) https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/voting-and-elections/voter-id/accepted-forms-photo-id

Voter Authority Certificate
You can use a Voter Authority Certificate to vote in person in some UK elections and referendums.
You can apply for a Voter Authority Certificate if:

  • you do not have accepted photo ID
  • you no longer look like the photo on your ID
  • the name on your photo ID is significantly different to your name on the electoral register

Apply for a Voter Authority Certificate here https://www.gov.uk/apply-for-photo-id-voter-authority-certificate

Postal vote
You can apply for a postal vote by any of these methods:

Using a paper form to apply for a postal vote.
The electronic application requires a digital copy of your signature. You will need to take an acceptable photo of your signature and upload it online. If this is difficult you can download a paper application form, fill it in with pen and ink and post it. The downloadable PDF forms to apply for a postal vote by post are available here https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/apply-for-a-postal-vote

Resources
The information above has been sourced from these websites. If you want to know more about the UK general election process please have a read – you never know what interesting facts you might discover!
For example, why are UK elections usually held on a Thursday?
Why was the 1978 Hamilton by-election held on a Wednesday?

The Electoral Commission https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/
Local Electoral Registration Office https://www.grampian-vjb.gov.uk/electoral-register/
UK Government website https://www.gov.uk/government/voting
National Union of Students https://www.nus.org.uk/general-election
NUS Scotland https://www.nus-scotland.org.uk/general-election

Disclaimer
This website is not responsible for the content of external sites and does not offer advice on any of the above matters.