Overseas voting is a perennial issue for many UK citizens living abroad. Brexit brought this to the fore. Many UK citizens living in the EU27 realised that having been out of the country for longer than 15 years, they no longer had the right to vote. Extending the vote for life was a Conservative Manifesto promise in 2015 & 2017.
But did you know that there is a private members’ bill currently progressing through the House of Commons on this matter (currently in its second reading)? This would make provision to extend the basis on which British citizens outside the UK qualify to participate in parliamentary elections. You can also read the House of Commons Briefing paper on this topic.
We’ve been keeping an eye on this issue over the duration of the project. You can listen to us talk about it in our podcasts on Brits Abroad and the right to vote, and Who cares about UK citizens living in the EU27? You can also read our analysis of the overseas vote in our posts Putting UK citizens abroad on the electoral map? and British enough for the vote?
This website has been produced as part of the research project BrExpats: freedom of movement, citizenship and Brexit in the lives of British citizens resident in the EU27. It is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (Grant Number ES/R000875/1) through the UK in a Changing Europe Initiative.