Press

Press release no. 11/2014 of April 11, 2014

Right to vote of Germans living abroad

WIESBADEN – Germans permanently living abroad will be permitted to vote in the 8th Direct Election of Members of the European Parliament from the Federal Republic of Germany on 25 May 2014. The Federal Returning Officer also reports that, to do so they have to meet the general electoral requirements and

  • either have to have had a residence in the other 27 European Union Member States, or have to have usually stayed there, for a minimum of three months on election day, with a stay in the Federal Republic of Germany directly before being deducted from the three-month period,
  • or have to have had a residence in the Federal Republic of Germany, or have to have usually stayed there, for a minimum of three months without interruption after they completed their 14th year of age, unless that stay was more than 25 years in the past,
  • or have to have become familiar with, and be affected by – personally and directly –, the political situation in the Federal Republic of Germany for other reasons.

Germans permanently residing abroad and no longer having a place of residence in Germany who wish to cast their vote in the 2014 European election in Germany must have their names entered in due time in the register of voters of their last home municipality in Germany. At the same time, they must affirm in lieu of an oath and in writing in a specific form that they are entitled to vote. The required application form is available on the website of the Federal Returning Officer.

The application for entry in the register of voters has to bear the applicant's personal handwritten signature; the original must be submitted to the competent municipality. The application must not be submitted by e-mail or fax. It has to be received by the competent municipality in Germany by the 21st day before the election (4 May 2014) at the latest. This period cannot be extended. Therefore the completed application forms should be sent to the relevant municipality as early as possible.

After entry in the register of voters, Germans living abroad will be sent the postal ballot documents by their municipality about one month before election day.

Germans who temporarily stay abroad but continue to be registered in Germany will ex officio be entered in the register of voters of their municipality and may cast their vote in the 2014 European election by postal ballot. It is necessary here to request in writing or orally that the local authority issue a polling card. The request may also be submitted by telegram, telex, fax or e-mail, although not by telephone. Anyone filing the request on behalf of another person must submit a relevant written proxy.

The postal ballot documents (polling card with affirmation in lieu of an oath and the ballot paper in the sealed ballot paper envelope) will have to be sent by the voters to the authority indicated on the official return envelope in good time for that authority to receive the postal ballot letter by election day, the 25 May 2014 by the end of the voting hours at 6 p.m. at the latest.

Some embassies and consulates of the Federal Republic of Germany offer a service for delivery of the completed postal ballot letters from the relevant country to Germany. For such information the relevant mission abroad should be contacted directly.

 

For further information:
Office of the Federal Returning Officer
tel: +49 611 75-4863
www.bundeswahlleiter.de/contact