Voter ID – what you need to know

From 4 May 2023, people who wish to vote in person (including those acting as a proxy), will be required to produce an accepted form of photographic ID to prove their identity before they will be issued with a ballot paper.

This will apply to:

  • Local elections
  • Town and parish elections
  • Neighbourhood planning referendums
  • UK parliamentary elections*
  • Police and crime commissioner elections

*The requirement for voter ID to be provided at UK parliamentary elections will take effect for polls after 5 October 2023.

Accepted forms of photo ID

You can use any of the following accepted forms of photo ID when voting at a polling station.

International travel

  • Passport issued by the UK, any of the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, a British Overseas Territory, an EEA state or a Commonwealth country

Driving and Parking 

  • Driving licence issued by the UK, any of the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, or an EEA state 
  • A Blue Badge

Local travel

  • Older Person’s Bus Pass
  • Disabled Person’s Bus Pass
  • Oyster 60+ Card
  • Freedom Pass
  • Scottish National Entitlement Card
  • 60 and Over Welsh Concessionary Travel Card
  • Disabled Person’s Welsh Concessionary Travel Card
  • Senior SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland
  • Registered Blind SmartPass or Blind Person’s SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland
  • War Disablement SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland
  • 60+ SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland
  • Half Fare SmartPass issued in Northern Ireland

Proof of age

  • Identity card bearing the Proof of Age Standards Scheme hologram (a PASS card)
  • Other government issued documents
  • Biometric immigration document
  • Ministry of Defence Form 90 (Defence Identity Card)
  • National identity card issued by an EEA state
  • Electoral Identity Card issued in Northern Ireland
  • Voter Authority Certificate
  • Anonymous Elector's Document

You will only need to show one form of photo ID. It needs to be the original version and not a photocopy.

Out of date photo ID

You can still use your photo ID if it's out of date, as long as it looks like you.  The name on your ID should be the same name you used to register to vote.

If you don't have an accepted form of photo ID

You can apply for a free voter ID document, known as a Voter Authority Certificate, if:

  • you don't have an accepted form of photo ID
  • you're not sure whether your photo ID still looks like you
  • you're worried about using an existing form of ID for any other reason, such as the use of a gender marker

You need to register to vote before applying for a Voter Authority Certificate.

How do I apply for a Voter Authority Certificate and what is the deadline to apply?

For the local and parish council elections taking place on 4 May 2023, the deadline to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate is 5pm on 25 April

Apply online

You will be able to apply for a Voter Authority Certificate at voter-authority-certificate.service.gov.uk/.  

Apply by post

You will also be able to apply by filling out a paper application form and sending this to the electoral services team at Solihull Council.  You can download the application form here. You can also request the instructions in large print, braille or easy read by contacting the electoral services team. Please print and complete the application form and post it to Solihull MBC, Electoral Services, Council House, Manor Square, Solihull, B91 3QB. 

Apply in person

From March 2023, you will also be able to apply in person at our Solihull Connect offices, located at:

Solihull Connect at The Core
Theatre Square
Solihull
B91 3RG

or

Solihull Connect at The Bluebell Centre
Ground Floor West Mall
Chelmsley Wood
Solihull
B37 5TN

Solihull Connect is open Monday to Friday* from 9.00am to 4.30pm

*Wednesdays from 10.00am to 4.30pm.  We are closed during bank holidays.

Information you will need to provide

When applying for a Voter Authority Certificate, you will need to provide your:

  • name
  • address
  • date of birth
  • National Insurance number 

You should apply using the same name that you used to register to vote.

You will not need to provide your gender, and your certificate will not have a gender marker.

If you don't know your National Insurance number or don't have one

You can find your National Insurance number on:

  • payslips
  • official letters about tax, pensions or benefits

You can still apply if you don’t know your National Insurance number, or don’t have one.

You will need to provide other forms of proof of identity, such as a birth certificate, bank statement and a utility bill.  The electoral services team will contact you about this.  

If you don’t have any other accepted proof of identity, you can ask someone you know to confirm your identity. This is known as an attestation. 

Providing a photograph

You will need to submit a photo with your application. The requirements for the photo are similar to the requirements for a passport photo. 

Processing your application

Solihull Council’s electoral services team will process your application and send the Voter Authority Certificate to you by post along with instructions on how to use it. .

Voter Authority Certificates do not have an expiration date, but it's recommended that you renew your certificate after 10 years.

All data you provide when applying for a certificate will be stored securely by Solihull Council, in line with data protection regulations.

For more information, please visit electoralcommission.org.uk/voterID