Deadline for applications ahead of the May 2019 polls in England and Northern Ireland

Applications to register a new political party, amend a party name, amend or add an emblem, or to add a description

In order to be likely to receive a decision from us on applications for use on ballot papers at the May 2019 polls, you must submit your application to us as soon as possible and no later than –

12pm, Monday, 4 February 2019.

If we receive a complete application by 12pm on 4 February 2019, to do one of the following:

  • register a new political party
  • amend a party name
  • amend or add an emblem
  • add a description
We will aim to provide a decision by:
  • 1 April 2019 in England, two days before the deadline for delivery of nomination papers on 3 April 2019.
  • 6 April 2019 in Northern Ireland, two days before the deadline for delivery of nomination papers on 8 April 2019.
Please be aware that it usually takes about six weeks to process an application from the date that it is considered complete.

It is very important that you submit your application to us as soon as possible. You should not wait until 12pm on Monday, 4 February 2019 to submit it.

If your application is not complete on submission and requires further information to be provided, you may not have time to amend it and still receive a decision before the deadline.

Applications that are not submitted as soon as possible and no later than 12pm, on Monday, 4 February 2019, are unlikely to receive a decision in time for inclusion on a ballot paper for the May 2019 polls.

Applications to substitute or remove a description.

If you intend to submit an application of this type, please contact us as the rules apply differently for applications to substitute or remove a description.

Where a decision is made to approve the substitution or removal of a description on the day of publication of the notice of election or after, it will not take effect until after the election.

You must ensure you deliver your application to us well before the date of publication of the notice of election at which you intend to stand candidates to allow time for it to go through the application process. Please note, the date of publication may vary for each local authority.

The notice of election for elections on 2 May 2019 must be published no later than 26 March 2019. However, local authorities may individually choose to publish the notice sooner than that.

We endeavour to process all complete applications as soon as possible and aim to let parties know the result of their application within about six weeks. We must carefully assess applications against the criteria set out in the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000. We undertake this process to ensure we reach a fair conclusion within the legal requirements.

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The PEF Online system provides a secure environment for the registration of political parties and campaigners at elections and referendums and the submission of their statutory returns.

If you are already registered as a party user and/or campaigner and you would like to start submitting your returns online, please see our guidance on getting started and complete the Nominate System Administrator form.

To register a new political party, non-party campaigner or referendum campaigner please click the Register now button below.