Registering to vote

Registering to vote

To be able to vote in elections, you need to be registered to vote. By law, if you are eligible, you have to be registered to vote, even if you don't vote. It's also important if you ever want credit - even a mobile phone contract - as credit agencies will check if you're on the register of electors. Everyone is responsible for registering themselves (Individual Electoral Registration or IER).

You need to provide details including your national insurance number and date of birth to register.

Just because you're on the council tax register doesn't mean you are on the register of electors, as the two lists contain different information.

To be able to register you must be:

  • Over 16 (although you cannot vote until you are18) 
  • A British or Commonwealth citizen or a citizen of the Irish Republic or other EU member state.

As long as no-one objects to your name appearing on the register of electors for the address you give, we will add you to it when we update it. We update the register of electors on the first working day of each month.

Household Enquiry Form

To help us keep the register up to date we send a Household Enquiry Form (HEF) to every household in the district once a year. This is called Annual Canvass.

Householders must check the form to confirm if their details are still the same or if there have been any changes.

Once a Household Enquiry Form has been completed any new electors at that address must individually register themselves so they can be added to the Electoral Register.

How to respond to a Household Enquiry Form

A Household Enquiry Form is sent to every home in East Hampshire during the annual canvass. This runs between August and November. If you have not received a Household Enquiry Form you can get one from East Hampshire District Council’s electoral services team on 01730 234350.Once you have received your form check that it has the correct details of everyone in your household.

If the details are correct you can confirm this:

  • Online (this service is now closed)
  • By telephone on 0800 197 9871
  • By completing the paper form and sending it back to us in the envelope provided

If the details are not correct, or you need to add the names of any new electors living in that household, you can respond:

  • Online (this service is now closed)
  • By completing the paper form and posting back to us in the envelope provided  

However, adding new names to your Household Enquiry Form does not mean they will automatically be added to the electoral register. Individuals must register themselves in order to appear on the electoral register. Any new names added to a Household Enquiry Form will be sent an Invitation to Register which will explain how this process works.

Overseas voter

UK citizens living abroad can apply to be an overseas voter. You must have been registered to vote in the UK in the last 15 years and be eligible to vote in UK Parliamentary general elections and European Parliamentary elections. If you were too young to register when you left the UK, you can still register as an overseas voter. You can do this if your parent or guardian was registered to vote in the UK, as long as you left the UK no more than 15 years ago.

Voting as a student

If you are voting as a student, you may be able to register to both your home and term-time addresses. It is a criminal offence to vote twice in a UK general election. Even if you are registered in two areas, at home and at university, you can only vote once at a general election.

However, if your home and university addresses are in two different local authority areas, you can vote in local elections in both.