Voting by proxy
A proxy vote is someone who votes on your behalf, if you are unable to get to the polling station on the day of the election.
Who can apply for a proxy vote?
Anyone aged 18 or over, and who is on the electoral register, can apply for a proxy vote.
How can I apply for a proxy vote?
You can apply online through the GOV.UK website for a proxy vote for a specific election or if you live overseas or are a service voter
Alternatively, you can download, print and complete an application to vote by proxy at a particular election [external link], request a form from the Elections Office or apply in person by contacting the helpline on 01325 406444 or e-mailing [email protected] Completed forms to be returned to the Elections Office, Darlington Borough Council, Town Hall, Darlington, DL1 5QT.
Application forms to vote by proxy for the foreseeable future or a longer period can be found on the Electoral Commission's website. The form you need to complete depends on the reason why you need a proxy vote.
You will need to give your date of birth, national insurance number and signature on any application to vote by proxy, together with a reason for the application and the relationship of the proxy to you (if any).
A new application to vote by proxy vote be completed and returned to the office no later than 5pm, six working days before the election.
How does the proxy vote for me?
Once you have appointed your proxy, you must inform them who you wish to vote for. They then go to your normal polling station and request the ballot paper on your behalf and cast your vote.
If they are unable to attend your polling station they will need to contact the helpline and apply for a proxy postal vote. An application to vote by post must be completed and returned to the office no later than 5pm, 11 working days before the election.
Absent vote refresh
Proxy voters are required to provide a signature, national insurance number and their date of birth when they first apply. These are known as 'personal identifiers' and will go through a verification process. If your details do not verify you may be required to provide further evidence of your identify.
You must provide an updated signature every five years, as signatures can change over time.
Each January, we are legally required to write to all proxy voters whose signatures are more than five years old, requesting that they complete an application form and provide a fresh signature.
If we do not receive a response after six weeks your proxy vote will be cancelled. You will still be able to vote in person at a polling station, or you can request to vote by post / proxy vote again.