Annual Electoral Canvass 2020
We are required to conduct an annual canvass of households in Derby each year to ensure that the Register of Electors is kept up to date.
The canvass is changing this year to make it easier for you to respond:
- we may use email or text messages to send you canvass communications, as an alternative to a paper form.
- in some circumstances, you will not need to respond. You will still be sent information on who is registered to vote in your household and be allowed to update your records if necessary.
Email and text message communications
If you have previously given us your email address or a mobile phone number, we may use these to ask you to confirm or update your records through our household response service. You should follow the instructions in the email or message to avoid paper forms being sent to your household.
You can access the online Household Response Service and enter the security code provided in the email or message we sent you.
I have moved to a new house recently
If you have moved into a new address recently please check that you are responding for your current address.
If the household response service shows your previous address, please do not proceed.
We will send a paper form to your current address but you, and other members of your household, can ensure you are registered as soon as possible by visiting GOV.UK - Register to vote.
My information is correct and has not changed
You should still respond to confirm that there are no changes to make to the electoral register.
This will help prevent further emails, messages or letters being sent to you.
Why have you contacted me by email or text message?
We have contacted you by email or text message because you have previously provided us with your contact details on an electoral registration form.
If you no longer want to be contacted by email or text message you should contact the Electoral Registration Officer to unsubscribe by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone on 01332 640837.
We will still need to contact you using other methods even if you unsubscribe from email or phone communication.
Canvass communications by post
If we send you a letter by post, you should read it carefully. The letter will tell you whether you need to respond or not.
The easiest way to respond is online, by visiting the Household Response Service and entering the security code printed on your letter.
If all of your information is correct on the letter you can either:
- record a 'no change' response using the automated phone line (0800 197 9871), or
- you can use our text service (send text to 80212). Text ‘NOCHANGE’ followed by your two-part security code.
Only return your canvass communication form by post if you are required to respond and are unable to use any of the online, phone or text options.
Amended canvass communication forms can be sent to:
The Electoral Registration Officer
Derby City Council
Derby DE1 2FS
You do not need to return the paper form if you have already responded using the other options
If you add any new people, they will also need to complete a registration application. They can do this at GOV.UK - Register to vote. We will send each person an Invitation to Register (ITR) form if they do not apply online.
If you remove somebody’s name we are often required to find a second source of information to confirm that the individual is not resident at your address. In some circumstances we are required to send a letter to a person you have told us is no longer living at your address, if we do please ignore this letter.
If someone has left the property and you know the forwarding address, please write the details of the new address and the person’s name on the form and return it to us. Or let us know by emailing email@example.com. This can help reduce the number of letters we send to your address.
Let us know If somebody in your household would like to:
- change their voting method to voting by post or proxy
- cancel their existing postal or proxy voting arrangements.
You can either, respond online or by amending the canvass communication form and returning it.
If you request a postal or proxy vote you will be sent an application form by email or post. We must receive a completed absent vote application if you wish to vote by post at future elections.
You can also download a postal vote application form online
Fully completed forms can be scanned and returned by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or by post:
The Electoral Registration Officer
Derby City Council
Derby DE1 2FS
If you ask us to cancel your postal or proxy vote you will be notified when we have processed your request. You will then have to cast your vote in person at your polling station at future elections unless you choose to re-apply.
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.
All registered voters are given the option to include or remove their details from the open register. This decision does not affect your right to vote.
If you would like to be included or removed from the open register, let us know when responding online or by amending the canvass communication form and returning it.
If you tell us that another member of your household would like to change their open register preference they will be sent a form asking them to confirm this.
If someone in your household is aged 76 or over but this is not indicated on the canvass communication or the online Household Response Service, please let us know. You can amend these details online or by amending the canvass communication and returning it.
The electoral register is used to select people for jury service, but if you are aged 76 or over you are not eligible to be a juror. We have to note this on the electoral register so that you are not selected for jury service.
If someone in your household has a new nationality or if their nationality is listed incorrectly, let us know when responding online or by amending the canvass communication and returning it.
Your nationality may affect which elections you can vote in. We must have the correct nationality recorded for everyone in your household.
If you receive a canvass communication by email or text message, please respond to avoid a form being sent to your address.
If you receive a form in the post, please read it carefully to see if a response is required.
If you do not responded to a canvass communication and a response is required, we may arrange for a canvasser to visit your property. All canvassers will have a Derby City Council ID card. The canvasser will ask you to confirm your household details and make any changes using a tablet computer.
If somebody in your household has previously given us a phone number, a canvasser may use that to contact you instead of visiting your property.
If you haven’t yet responded to a canvass communication but you still have the form, you can avoid a canvasser visit by responding to the canvass communication using the online service. Or by amending the form and returning it to the Electoral Registration Officer.
Even if you do not want to register to vote, you still need to respond to your canvass communication giving the details of everyone at your property that is eligible to register. If you do not respond to a canvass communication when required to do so, you could face a fine of up to £1,000.
The penalty for knowingly providing false information is imprisonment of up to six months and or an unlimited fine.
If you have responded to a canvass communication and realise that you made a mistake, please contact Electoral Services. Email: email@example.com or phone: 01332 640837 and advise which information was entered incorrectly and what the correct information should be.
Please do not attempt to submit another response via one of the automated channels or by post.
An Invitation To Register (ITR) form is sent out to anybody whose details have been added to the canvass communication but who hasn’t registered to vote online.
Responses to a canvass communication may notify us that a new person is living at a property and that they are eligible to register. We send them the ITR to collect information required to complete the voter registration process. People who receive an ITR can complete their voter registration online at GOV.UK - Register to vote
We ask for details such as the applicant's date of birth and National Insurance number. These details are automatically checked against records held by the Department of Work and Pensions to verify their identity.
You will not be able to vote if we are not be able to add you to the electoral register. Register online at GOV.UK - Register to vote or complete and return an ITR that is sent to you,
By registering to vote online and completing an ITR you will:
- secure your right to vote
- improve your credit rating
- make it quicker and easier to access some council services
- avoid an £80 fine and ITR reminder letters
Please note that registering online or returning an ITR does not guarantee that we will be able to add you to the register of electors immediately. We may contact you to request further information so we can confirm your identity.
If nobody in your household is eligible to register to vote, you still need to notify us by responding to your canvass communication. You can do so online at the Household Response Service.
If the canvass communication you have received is already blank, you can also either:
- record a “no change” response using the automated phone line - phone: 0800 197 9871
- use our text service - text ‘NOCHANGE’ followed by your two-part security code to 80212.
If you are unable to use one of the automated services, please amend the paper form and return it.
If you are a student living in Derby you may still need to respond to the canvass communication sent to your term-time address. The easiest way to do this is online using the Household Response Services. This applies even if you are an international student or you are already registered to vote at your home address.
You could receive a fine of up to £1,000 if we do not receive a canvass communication response for your property.
As students, you are eligible to be registered at both your home and term-time addresses.
However, you can only vote from one location at national elections.
All new residents at an address should then go online to GOV.UK - Register to vote to register to vote at their term-time address.
Make sure that you put that your Derby address as your ‘second home’ so that you are not removed from your home address.
If you are the landlord of business premises or an empty property, it is your responsibility to respond to the canvass communication for that address. Please let us know by responding online or by amending the canvass communication and returning it.
If you own a second home and no one else lives your second address, you are responsible for responding to the canvass communication.
If you split your time between your two properties, you are entitled to be registered to vote at both addresses. You can only vote from one location in national elections.
If you would like to be registered at your second property and your name is not already included on the canvass communications please:
- add your details online at the Household Response Service
- register to vote at GOV.UK - Register to vote
If you spend less than half of your time at your second property you are unlikely to be eligible to vote unless you are a student.
The occupants of a house of multiple occupancy (HMO) are responsible for responding to the canvass communication sent to a house of multiple occupancy (HMO).
Please respond online using the Household Response Services. You must include details for all residents of the property and be recorded in one visit to the website only. You cannot save and return to a part-finished response at a later time.
If you cannot access the online service you can amend and return the paper canvass communication.
A lack of mental capacity is not a legal incapacity to vote. Persons who meet the other registration qualifications are eligible for registration regardless of their mental capacity.
On a paper form, the applicant must make the declaration by signing or making their usual mark. On an online application, the applicant must confirm that the information is correct. Alternatively, a person who has an appropriate power of attorney may make the declaration on behalf of the applicant.
While electors with any level or no level of mental capacity may be registered to vote, the decision as to whether and how to vote at an election must be made by the elector themselves and not by any other person on their behalf. Those who care for or who otherwise make decisions on behalf of a person may not make decisions on voting.
The application requires the person who is applying to declare that the information provided is true (a ‘declaration of truth’).
If you are concerned about your name and address appearing on the electoral register because it could affect your safety, or the safety of someone living with you, you may be able to register anonymously.
Please request an anonymous application form by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or phone: 01332 640837.
Anonymous applications must be supported by either an eligible court document or an attestation from a qualifying officer.
Eligible court documents you can use to support your application:
- an injunction to restrain a person from pursuing any conduct which amounts to harassment granted in proceedings
- an injunction granted under Protection from Harassment Act
- a restraining order made under the Protection from Harassment Act
- a restraining order on acquittal
- a non-harassment order
- a non-molestation order made the Family Law Act
- a matrimonial interdict
- a domestic interdict
- a relevant interdict
- an interdict that has been determined to be a domestic abuse interdict
- any interdict with an attached power of arrest
- a forced marriage protection order or interim forced marriage protection order
- a domestic violence protection order
- a female genital mutilation protection order
No other court documents are acceptable and the court document must be in force on the day of your application to register anonymously.
Only those listed below may attest an application. The attestation cannot be delegated to a more junior person within an organisation. A qualifying officer can be:
- a police officer of or above the rank of inspector of any police force in England and Wales
- a police officer of or above the rank of inspector of the Police Service of Scotland
- a police officer of or above the rank of inspector of the Police Service of Northern Ireland
- the Director General of the Security Service
- the Director General of the National Crime Agency
- any director of adult social services in England
- any director of children’s services in England
- any director of social services in Wales
- any chief social work officer in Scotland
- any director of social services of a Health and Social Services Board
- any executive director of social work of a Health and Social Services Trust
- any registered medical practitioner
- any registered nurse or midwife
- any person who manages a refuge. A “refuge” means accommodation with a planned programme of therapeutic and practical support for victims of, or those at risk of, domestic abuse or violence.
Read more about registering to vote anonymously.
You will not receive a canvass communication if you do not have a fixed address, as these forms are sent to properties and not to individuals.
However, you can still register to vote even if you do not have a fixed address. This could be because:
- You are homeless
- You are living on a boat or other movable residence
- You are part of the travelling community
- You are a person who has been remanded in custody, but you have not yet been convicted of any offence
- You are a patient in a mental health hospital (sectioned under certain circumstances only)
- You are a merchant seaman
To register to vote, you need to give a “qualifying address” where we can locate your registration. This could be a previous address that you still have ties to, an address where you spend the majority of your time, or an address where you would be living if it weren’t for your current situation.
Read more about registering to vote with no fixed address.