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Applying for a vote

To exercise their political rights, Swiss Abroad must be included in an electoral register.

Swiss Abroad do not automatically participate in elections and votes; to do so, they must complete the “Application for the exercise of political rights“ form from the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA).

Send the completed form to the Swiss representation with which you are registered. Also read the FDFA factsheet for the registration of political rights.

Dispatch of the official voting papers

The polling commune will send persons authorised to vote the official voting papers by postal mail directly to their address abroad, i.e. without involvement of the Swiss representation. The voter must then return their ballot to the polling commune at their own expense. Bearing in mind that the Confederation cannot be held responsible for the efficiency of foreign postal services, all Swiss Abroad have to accept the risk of delayed delivery of the polling material abroad as well as possible late arrival of the ballot at the polling commune in Switzerland.

If you are in Switzerland when voting or elections take place, you can also take part either by mail or personally by dropping your vote into the ballot-box in your polling commune. Moreover, if you want to collect the papers yourself, this is also possible. You should, however, inform your polling commune in good time (at least six weeks prior to the next vote or election).

What you can do in the event of dispatch problems or late delivery of the documents is explained on our Voting problems page. 

Additional information: