Absent Vote Signature Refresh

We are required to refresh signatures held for more than 5 years for Absent Voters, such as Postal or Proxy Voters. If you receive an absent vote signature refresh form please ensure that you return it to us as soon as possible to avoid a reminder.

Changes to your details?

If your name, address, the destination for your postal ballot papers or the details of your proxy have changed, please amend the relevant details on the form. Please then sign the form before sending it back to us in the prepaid envelope provided. In some cases we may need to send you an additional form to complete. If you have any questions about the signature refresh exercise, please contact elections@breckland.gov.uk or telephone 01362 656870.

Purpose of the refresh

Under the Representation of the People (England and Wales) Regulations 2001, electoral registration officers must, by 31 January each year, send every person who has an absent vote and whose signature has been held for more than five years a notice requiring them to provide a fresh signature if they wish to remain an absent voter. This applies to postal voters, electors who have appointed a proxy and postal proxies.
Legislation further states that absent voters have six weeks from the date the notice is sent to return the completed and signed notice to the electoral registration officers. If the deadline is missed, the absent vote will be removed and a letter will be sent to the elector informing them of this action. Anyone whose absent vote is removed and who wishes to vote by post/proxy in the future will have to complete a new absent vote application. Absent voters who have a special arrangement are not affected by the refresh provisions as a signature is not held for them.


  • 13 January 2020- notices will be sent to approximately 1,472 absent voters, asking them to return the completed notices by 24 February 2020.
  • 10 February 2020- reminder notices will be sent to those electors who have not yet returned the notice or where a notice has been returned but is not acceptable for some reason (e.g. surname different to that on original application, details did not scan because writing was too feint).
  • 24 February 2020- deadline date for receipt of notices. Any absent voters who have not returned the notices by this date will have their absent vote deleted on the next working day.
  • 2 March 2020- all non-responders' absent votes are to be deleted and a letter sent to the relevant electors advising them of our action.

Last updated: 16/06/2020 15:15:55