The Electoral Commission has issued guidance that clarifies who will receive a postal vote for the AV referendum in May, which you can download from their website here.

There are a number of variations for those people who have registered for a postal vote depending on which elections they have requested a postal vote for and whether there are elections in that area on 5th May.  In summary though, the people who will receive a postal vote for the referendum is as follows:

  • people who have made a specific application to vote by post at the referendum, and this application has been granted

  • people who are on the standing postal voters list (definite/indefinite period) to vote at a UK Parliamentary election, or

  • people who are entitled to vote in the referendum and in a poll that is taken together with the referendum and are included on the postal voters list for that poll.

This third bullet point is the one that has the most scope for confusion, as it means that people who are registered to have a postal vote in a council election only will only receive a postal vote for the referendum if they have local elections on the same day – this particularly affects people in London and those unitaries and districts that don’t have council elections this year, such as Cornwall, Shropshire, Northumberland, Wiltshire, Oxford, Gosport and Cheltenham (and a number of others).

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