Living Abroad & Voting In The 8th Amendment Referendum

Living Abroad & Voting In The 8th Amendment Referendum
Hannah O'Connell
Hannah O'Connell

29 Mar 2018

You're an Irish citizen living abroad and wondering about your vote in the upcoming referendum on the 8th amendment. 

Here are the official answers to some of the questions you may have.

Am I registered?

The Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade website says in order to vote in an election or referendum in Ireland, you must be registered to vote on the Register of Electors.

You can check if you're registered on the Check The Register website here.

Under Section 11.3 of the Electoral Act 1992, Irish citizens overseas may retain full voting rights for a period of 18 months, should they intend to return to Ireland within that time frame.

Can I register?

To be included on that Register of Electors you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old on the day the Register comes into force
  • Have been ordinarily resident in the State on 1 September in the year preceding the coming into force of the Register.

According to the Department of Foreign Affairs website if you are an Irish citizen living abroad, you cannot be entered on the Register of Electors and cannot vote in an election or referendum in Ireland. 

Where can I vote?

If your name is on the Register of Electors you must return to Ireland to vote.

What about voting by post?

Here's what the Citizen's Information website says:

You will normally be required to vote in person at an official voting centre, however, you may be eligible for a postal vote if you are:

  • A full-time member of the Defence Force
  • A member of the Garda Siochana
  • An Irish diplomat or his/her spouse posted abroad

The referendum on the 8th amendment has been confirmed for May 25th.