Elections - Electoral Register

Your-Vote-Matters

The way we all register to vote has changed

The registration system changed in June 2014. The new system is called ‘Individual Electoral Registration’ (IER) and is the biggest change to the voter registration system in 100 years.

Most people who are already registered will be transferred automatically to the new register. However, some people will need to re-register in Rhondda Cynon Taf. There are also people in the area who are not registered to vote at all and so need to register to have their say in elections.

If you weren’t registered previously, you can register under the new system at www.gov.uk/yourvotematters|.

For more information, please select an area below:

Why Register?

Getting a mortgage is just one reason you need to be on the electoral register. Having the right to vote is another.

The County Borough Council has 75 councillors representing 52 electoral divisions; The full council comes up for election every four years.

  • If you are not registered you will not be able to vote at Elections.
  • It is a legal requirement to register with a maximum fine of £1,000 for failure to do so. Many of the major credit firms check your address against the Electoral Register and you may be refused a loan, mobile phone agreement, mortgage, bank account etc.
  • It is your chance to have your say about how the Council is run. - Your Vote Counts use it

Who Can Register?

British citizens, other Commonwealth citizens, citizens of the Irish Republic and citizens of Member States of the European Union who are resident in the United Kingdom are entitled to be included in the new register.

British, Commonwealth and Irish Citizens will be registered automatically as Local, Parliamentary Welsh Assembly and European Parliamentary Electors.

Citizens of the European Union are NOT eligible to vote at Parliamentary Elections.

It will be too late to complain on polling day if you discover you are not able to vote, Exercise your right by ensuring your name is included on the register.

Remember, if you are not on the Register of Electors you will NOT be able to vote at any Election.

For more information on Voting and how to register to vote please visit Elections - Voting|

What is IER and how do I Register?

How is the new system different?

  • You can now register online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote or over the phone by ringing 01443 490100
  • Everyone is responsible for registering themselves. Under the old system the ‘head of every household’ could register everyone who lived at their address.
  • You need to provide a few more details to register – including your national insurance number and date of birth. This makes the electoral register more secure. 

Please ensure you have these to hand if you are using the online or telephone registration method.

How do I register under the new system and what information do I need?

  1. Go to www.gov.uk/register-to-vote
  2. Fill in your name, address, date of birth and a few other details. You’ll also need your national insurance number, which can be found on your national insurance card, or in official paperwork such as payslips, or letters about benefits or tax credits.
  3. Look out for a confirmation to say you’re registered.

Will I need to do anything?

  •  Look out for a letter in July 2014
  • Most people who are already registered to vote will be registered automatically under the new system. They do not need to do anything. However, some people will need to take action to join the new register. We are writing to people to tell them whether they need to take action.
  •  Respond to the letter if you are asked to
  • The letter will tell you whether you are on the new register or whether you need to take action. It will tell you what to do.

The Electoral Register

Registers are managed locally by Electoral Registration Officers. Using information received from the public, registration officers keep two registers – the Electoral Register and the Open Register (also known as the edited register).

The electoral register lists the names and addresses of everyone who is registered to vote in public elections. The register is used for electoral purposes such as making sure only eligible people can vote. It is also used for other limited purposes specified in law, such as detecting crime (e.g., fraud), calling people for jury service and checking credit applications.

The Open Register

The Open Register is an extract of the Electoral Register, but is not used for elections. It can be bought by any person, company or organisation. For example, it is used by businesses and charities to confirm name and address details.

Your name and address will be included in the open register unless you ask for them to be removed. Removing your details from the open register does not affect your right to vote. You can ask for them to be removed by contacting your local council’s electoral registration staff on 01443 490100.

How do I join or get removed from the Open Register?

If you are registering online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote|you can click the checkbox if you do not want your name and address listed on the open register.

You can also change your opt-out preference at any time by making a request to local electoral registration staff with your full name, address and an indication of whether you wish to be included in or omitted from the open register.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to let you know that I have moved?

Yes. If you don't tell us, you will still have a chance to vote at your old address, up to October when the annual canvass is held.

I have already told the Council Tax section will they update the register for me?

No. You still have to register with the Electoral Registration team, or go to www.gov.uk/yourvotematters|

What if I have changed my name?

You will need to contact the Electoral Registration team.

What is individual electoral registration?

Previously, the ‘head of household’ was responsible for registering everyone who lived at the address, but now every individual is responsible for their own voter registration. This is called Individual Electoral Registration. The new system also means that people are now able to register online. Anyone newly registering under the new system will need to register themselves individually by filling out a paper or online form.

Do I need to do anything / do I need to re-register (during write-out)?

Most people who are currently registered to vote have been registered automatically under the new system. They do not need to do anything and will continue to be registered to vote as usual. We will send a letter in July/August 2014 to let these people know that they are registered under the new system.

A minority of people on the electoral register have not been automatically registered under the new system. It is straightforward for these people to re-register. We are writing to the people who are not automatically registered to let them know that they need to register under the new system. We included a registration form with the letter or they can register online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote|.

If you are not registered to vote, you can register at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote|.

Why has the system changed?

Individual electoral registration gives you the right and responsibility to register yourself, instead of giving the responsibility to a ‘head of household’. As such, it encourages people to take individual responsibility for their own vote. The change has also allowed more convenient methods of registration, for example, by internet (or by telephone or in person if offered by your local authority). Because the new system asks you for a few more details before you are added to the register – your National Insurance number and date of birth – the electoral register will be more secure and more resistant to threats of electoral fraud.

Who is responsible for changing the system?

The system was introduced by the UK government through the Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013|which became law on 31 January 2013. Electoral Registration Officers are implementing the change.

Does the change affect how I vote?

Voting processes haven’t changed. However, if you want to vote by post or proxy you will need to ensure that you are registered under the new system. If you want to vote by post and haven’t already applied, you will need to do so by 5pm 11 working days before an election to vote by post at that election.

If you haven’t already applied to vote by proxy, the deadline is normally six working days before an election, apart from in the case of a medical emergency or if you are called away unexpectedly for work reasons, when you may be able to apply up to 5pm on polling day.

How do I join or get removed from the open (edited) register?

Using information received from the public, registration officers keep two registers – the electoral register and the open register (also known as the edited register).

The electoral register lists the names and addresses of everyone who is registered to vote in public elections. The register is used for electoral purposes, such as making sure only eligible people can vote. It is also used for other limited purposes specified in law, such as detecting crime (e.g. fraud), calling people for jury service and checking credit applications.

The open register is an extract of the electoral register, but is not used for elections. It can be bought by any person, company or organisation. For example, it is used by businesses and charities to confirm name and address details.

Your name and address will be included in the open register unless you ask for them to be removed. Removing your details from the open register does not affect your right to vote. You can change your opt-out preference at any time by making a request with your full name, address and an indication of whether you wish to be included in or omitted from the edited register. You can do this in writing or over the phone by calling 01443 490100. Please note: We will also write to you to confirm any change.

What is the open (edited) register?

Using information received from the public, registration officers keep two registers – the electoral register and the open register (also known as the edited register).

The electoral register lists the names and addresses of everyone who is registered to vote in public elections. The register is used for electoral purposes, such as making sure only eligible people can vote. It is also used for other limited purposes specified in law, such as detecting crime (e.g. fraud), calling people for jury service and checking credit applications.

The open register is an extract of the electoral register, but is not used for elections. It can be bought by any person, company or organisation. For example, it is used by businesses and charities to confirm name and address details.

Your name and address will be included in the open register unless you ask for them to be removed. Removing your details from the open register does not affect your right to vote.

How do I find my National Insurance number?

A National Insurance number is a reference number used by government. The easiest place to find your National Insurance number is on official paperwork, such as your National Insurance card, payslips or letters from the Department for Work and Pensions or HM Revenue &Customs (HMRC).Students may be able to find it in their university registration details or application for student loan.If you still can’t find it, you can use the HMRC enquiry service at www.gov.uk/lost-national-insurance-number|.

  • If you don’t have access to the Internet you can call the National Insurance Registrations Helpline on 0300 200 3502.
  • For Welsh language enquiries, the National Insurance Registrations Helpline phone number is: 0300 200 1900

Please be aware HMRC won't tell you your National Insurance number over the phone, they'll post it to you.

Alternatively, you can write to:

HM Revenue & Customs
National Insurance Contributions & Employer Office
National Insurance Registrations
Benton Park View
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE98 1ZZ

Most people in the UK have a National Insurance number. If you do not have one, you will be asked to explain why you are unable to provide it. Local electoral registration staff may contact you to ask you for proof of identity.

Contact Information

Electoral Services and Land Charges Section
Unit 2 Maritime Business Park,
Maritime Industrial Estate,
Pontypridd.
CF37 1NY

Tel: 01443 490100
Fax: 01443 485776
Email: electoralservices@rhondda-cynon-taff.gov.uk|