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Deadline Approaches For Free Voter Id Ahead Of Uk General Election

24th June 2024

Photograph of Deadline Approaches For Free Voter Id Ahead Of Uk General Election

Time is running out to apply for free voter ID ahead of the UK general election. The deadline is 5pm Wednesday 26 June.

For the first time at a UK general election, voters will need to show photo ID to receive their ballot paper in polling places. Those without an accepted type of ID can apply online for a free Voter Authority Certificate, at or by submitting a paper form to

Applicants must be registered to vote and will need to provide their date of birth, National Insurance number and a passport type photograph.

Those that have an accepted form of ID already do not need to apply. Accepted forms of ID include a passport, driving licence, older or disabled persons bus pass and Young Scot card. Voters will be able to use an expired ID if they are still recognisable from the photo.

The general election is taking place Thursday 4 July.

Andy O'Neill, Head of the Electoral Commission, Scotland, said: "Photo ID is now a requirement to vote at polling places at the UK general election. If you do not have accepted ID, you can still apply for a Voter Authority Certificate, which is a free form of identification.

"The availability of free ID helps ensure elections remain accessible to all eligible voters. But it is crucial that anyone who needs one applies before the deadline. That date is fast approaching so don't delay."

Derek Brown, Returning Officer for two Highland constituencies added: “As the deadline to apply for free ID fast approaches, it is important that voters in the Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross constituency and the Inverness, Skye and West Ross-shire constituency make sure they’re election ready. If you need any help with applying for free ID or want to request an application form, you can contact the electoral registration office on 0800 393783 or email:

Voters also have the option to vote by proxy. the deadline for a proxy vote is 5pm Wednesday 26 June. For information on elections in their area, how to register to vote or how to apply by post or by proxy, voters can visit

The requirement to show photo ID at the polling place was introduced by the UK Government’s Elections Act.

The legislation requires voters at polling places to show an accepted form of photo ID before they receive their ballot paper. The requirement applies to UK parliamentary elections, including parliamentary by-elections, local council elections in England, and police and crime commissioner elections in England and Wales. It does not apply at local elections in Scotland or Wales, or elections to the Scottish Parliament or Senedd. The requirement already exists in Northern Ireland.

The UK Government’s Department for Levelling up, Housing and Communities is responsible for the voter ID policy and for the free voter ID application system. Enquiries relating to the application system or the policy itself should be directed to the Department.
The Electoral Commission is responsible for ensuring voters are aware of the voter ID requirement, and for supporting local authorities with the process. Questions related to the public awareness campaign should be directed to the Electoral Commission.

Electoral Registration Officers and Returning Officers are responsible for implementing voter ID at the local level in Scotland.