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Elections abroad

Updated : 08/08/2014

living-abroad

Municipal elections

If you are an EU national living in another EU country, you have the right to vote and stand as a candidate in municipal elections in that country.

Getting on the electoral roll

If you want to vote in municipal elections in the country where you live, you first need to express your intention to do so and apply to be put on the electoral roll in that country. You will be asked to supply information such as your nationality and address.

Find out where and how to register in your host country:

Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia, Slovenia, United Kingdom: Information not yet provided by national authorities

However, in the case of municipal elections, registration on electoral rolls is automatic in these countries: Austria (except Burgenland), Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, the Netherlands, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Sweden. Once registered as a resident there, you will automatically be put on the electoral roll for municipal elections.

In countries where voting is compulsory, you will be included on electoral rolls only upon your own request.

Conditions to vote

As an EU national, you will be voting under the same conditions as nationals of the country where you live. If nationals are required to have been living in the country or in the municipality for a certain period to be allowed to vote, it will be the same for you.

However, the periods that you have spent in other EU countries - other than your home country - should be taken into account.

Special rules can apply in EU countries where non-nationals make up more than 20 % of the total electorate; in such cases, the host country can require an additional period of residence before you can participate in municipal elections. Today the only such country is Luxembourg.

Compulsory voting

If voting in municipal and European elections is compulsory in your host country and, following registration, you were put on the electoral roll of that country, you are obliged to vote - just as the nationals of that country are.

Voting is compulsory in these EU countries: Belgium, Cyprus, Greece and Luxembourg.

Standing as a candidate

To stand as a candidate in municipal elections in your host country you may be required to make a declaration that you are not disqualified from standing as a candidate in your home country. You may be asked to support this declaration with proof issued in your home country.

In these countries, you can be elected to a councilor's position - but only nationals can become mayors:

  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Cyprus
  • France
  • Greece
  • Italy
  • Lithuania
  • Poland
  • Romania
  • Slovenia

In some other countries, the positions of deputy mayor and member of the mayor's executive committee (aldermen) are also reserved for nationals.

Conditions to stand as a candidate

As an EU national, you can stand as a candidate under the same conditions that apply to nationals of the country where you live. If nationals are required to have been living in the country or in the municipality for a certain period to be allowed to stand for election, it will be the same for you.

However, the periods that you have spent in other EU countries - other than your home country - should be taken into account.

Special rules can apply in EU countries where non-nationals make up more than 20 % of the total electorate; in such cases, the host country can require an additional period of residence before you can stand as a candidate in municipal elections. Today the only such country is Luxembourg.

More on voting and standing as a candidate in your host country:

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Footnote

In this case, the 28 EU member states

Retour au texte en cours.

In this case, the 28 EU member states

Retour au texte en cours.

In this case, the 28 EU member states

Retour au texte en cours.

In this case, the 28 EU member states

Retour au texte en cours.

In this case, the 28 EU member states

Retour au texte en cours.