How to nominate someone to vote on your behalf

If you are unable to get to the polling station on polling day you may apply to appoint a person you trust to vote on your behalf up to six working days before an election, except in emergency situations.  They are called a proxy voter. 

You should not be asked or told to appoint someone as a proxy voter: it is your choice alone and you should only appoint someone you trust.

You can only appoint a proxy voter in limited circumstances where you are unable to vote.

We must have accepted your application to vote by a proxy and any supporting evidence required: submitting an application is not enough.

Types of proxy vote

There are three types of proxy vote.  You must have a valid reason for your application and, except in the case of temporary proxy votes, you must provide supporting evidence.

Temporary Proxy Vote – will apply to a single election and a valid reason must be provided.

Permanent or Long Term Proxy Vote – applies to all elections and you must have supporting evidence, e.g. from your GP.  To make changes or cancel existing proxy vote contact the Council on 020 8430 2000.

Emergency Proxy Vote – for medical emergencies six or less days before the election and must be supported by medical evidence.

Who can be a proxy voter?

A proxy must be registered to vote (they do not need to be a Newham voter) and

A proxy cannot vote on behalf of more than two people.

How can a proxy vote on your behalf?

A proxy can:

  • Vote in person by going to your polling station
  • Voting by post. The proxy will need to contact the Council on 020 8430 2000 for a postal proxy application form. The form must be submitted by no later than 5pm on the 11th working day before the date of the election.

Can you still vote if you have appointed a proxy?

Yes, so long as your proxy has not already voted for you.

  • You may still vote in person at your polling station, as long as your proxy hasn't already voted for you.
  • You cannot vote in person if your proxy has already arranged to vote for you by post.

Applying for a Proxy Vote

From 31st October 2023, you will need to provide your date of birth, National Insurance number and signature on the application form. This is due to a change to electoral law which requires you to verify your identity when applying to vote by proxy.

If you are unable to provide your National Insurance number, you will need to provide an explanation. Further evidence will be requested by the Electoral Services team, such as a passport, driving licence or utility bills.

There are two ways to apply to vote by post:

Apply for a proxy vote - GOV.UK
Application to vote by proxy in England at a particular election

If you are applying using a paper application form, please complete the form and return it to or alternatively post it to: Electoral Services, Newham Dockside 1000 Dockside Road, London E16 2QU

You must submit the application form to us at least six working days before an election, except in emergency situations (see below). We can only issue you with a proxy vote if the application is validly completed so please don’t leave it to the last minute if possible

Old style applications received after 30 October 2023 (without a national insurance number) will be rejected. Applicants will be notified in writing and given instructions to re-apply.

WARNING: With a proxy vote, you are trusting someone to vote as you intended to vote in an election.  Before applying for a proxy vote, please consider if it’s better for you to apply for a postal vote which you can complete yourself and ensure that your vote is cast as you intended.