Photo ID required to vote at May elections
The UK Government has introduced a requirement for voters to show photo ID when voting at a polling station at the following elections:
- Local elections
- Police and Crime Commissioner elections
- UK parliamentary by-elections
- Recall petitions
This new requirement will apply for the first time in England at the local elections on Thursday 4 May 2023. From October 2023 it will also apply to UK General elections.
Valid Photo ID
You may already have a form of photo ID that is acceptable as you can use any of the following:
- Passport issued by the UK, the Channel Islands, Isle of Man, British Overseas Territories, an EEA state or a Commonwealth country
- Driving licence issued by the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man or an EEA state
- Biometric immigration document
- Identity card bearing the Proof of Age Standards Scheme hologram (a PASS card)
- Ministry of Defence Form 90 (Defence Identity Card)
- Blue Badge
- National identity card issued by an EEA state
- Older Person’s Bus Pass
- Disabled Person’s Bus Pass
See the full list of acceptable ID on the Electoral Commission website.
If you have a form of accepted photo ID which is out of date, you can still use it to vote at a polling station if it still looks like you.
You will only need to show one form of photo ID, but it needs to be the original version and not a photocopy. Images on phones will not be accepted.
What if I don’t have any acceptable form of photo ID?
If you don’t already have an accepted form of photo ID, or you’re not sure whether your photo ID still looks like you, you can apply for a free voter ID document, which is known as a Voter Authority Certificate.
We recommend that you do this in good time and well ahead of the local elections on Thursday 4 May 2023, when you will need to bring valid photo ID in order to vote at a polling station. The deadline to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate for the local elections on 4 May 2023 is 5pm on Tuesday 25 April 2023.
You need to be registered to vote before you apply for a Voter Authority Certificate. You can register to vote online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote or contact the electoral services team (contact details below). You will need your national insurance number to register.
You can also apply by post. You’ll need to print, fill out and send the form with your photograph to:
Electoral Registration Officer, Birkenhead Town Hall, Mortimer Street, Birkenhead, CH41 5EU.
You can also contact Electoral Services by email at email@example.com or call the team on 0151 691 8046.
More information on the requirements for voter ID can be found on the Electoral Commission website