Annual Canvass - updating your details

Find out what you need to do to respond to your Household Enquiry Form (HEF) or Invitation to Register (ITR).

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Why have I received a Household Enquiry Form?

You have received a Household Enquiry Form (HEF) as part of our 'annual canvass'. The canvass takes place on a yearly basis, to make sure that the register of electors is up to date. To do this, we send a HEF to every residential property in Guildford.

Email forms

If we hold an email address for you, we will send the HEF via email. The email will be sent from noreply@guildford.gov.uk on 2 July 2018.

If we hold an email address for more than one person in the property, each individual person will receive an email.

Only one response per household is required. The email will ask you to log on to our HEF response service, and get you to confirm or update the details we hold.

Please be assured that this email is a genuine request, but if you are unsure please contact electoral services.

Paper forms

If we do not hold an email address for you, or you don't respond to the email by 11 July 2018, we will send you a paper HEF. The form will be addressed to 'The Occupier', and will contain the details of all those in the household who are registered to vote. Where a property has no registered electors, the form will be blank.

We will begin sending paper HEFs from 20 July 2018.

You need to respond to the form, even if you have no changes to make.

If you do not respond to the HEF, you could be fined up to £1,000.

How do I respond to my HEF?

Check the information in the form. Then respond using one of these options:

✔ If your details are correct:

✗ If your details are incorrect:

It is quicker and cheaper if you respond to the HEF electronically. You will need the security codes (printed on the front page of your form) if you respond online or by phone.

If you are unable to respond electronically, please complete the form and return it in the envelope provided.

Deadline to respond

Please respond to the HEF by 17 August 2018.

If you do not get a chance to respond by the deadline, a reminder form will be sent out after this date. If you do not respond to the reminder, we send out electoral canvassers to visit your property to ask you to respond to the HEF.

To avoid the expense of sending reminders and canvassers, please respond to your form as soon as possible. It is a legal requirement for you to respond, even if you have no changes to make. 

If you do not respond at all, you could be fined £1,000.

Empty property, second home, business premises

If you receive a HEF, but your property is either empty, a second home or a business premise, we still need you to respond.

Please go to section 4 (for populated forms) or section 2 (for blank forms) and tick the appropriate box, then sign and return the form.

Eligible nationalities

If you think no one living in your property is eligible to register to vote because of nationality, you still need to respond.

Please go to section 4 (for populated forms) or section 2 (for blank forms) and tick the appropriate box to say 'none of the residents are eligible to vote because of their nationality'.

Please also give the nationalities of the people, and if you are unsure, check our icon list of nationalities eligible to register to vote [80.94KB] .

Changes you may need to tell us

These are the changes you can make on the HEF, and how to do so:

Someone has moved in/out of the property

  • If responding online, follow the instructions for removing or adding a person

  • If responding via paper form, cross out the name of the person who has moved away, or write the name of the person who has moved in (in the appropriate section)

Adding a person's name on the Household enquiry response website, or to the HEF, does not mean that they will be added to the register of electors. All new people who are added to the HEF will receive a form called an Invitation to Register (ITR) that they will need to complete and return to be added to the register.

If you provide the new person's email address, we will send this form to them electronically; otherwise, they will receive a paper form.

The ITR form will ask them for additional information, including their national insurance number and date of birth. Once received, they can respond to the ITR online at www.gov.uk/registertovote

A household member is aged 76 or over, but not accordingly marked

  • If responding online, follow the instructions to mark them as 76 or over

  • If responding via paper form, go to the 'Over 76?' column, cross out the word 'no' and write 'yes' underneath

We ask for this information because it is used by the courts when selecting people for jury service. Those aged 76 or over are exempt from being called.

Change of nationality

You will not be able to amend your nationality online. Please complete the online response without changing your nationality. After you have submitted your online response, please email us (electoralservices@guildford.gov.uk) with your:

  • full name

  • full address

  • details of your previous and new nationality

  • proof of your change of nationality, for example a photocopy of your passport or naturalisation certificate

  • If responding via the paper form, cross out your previous nationality and write your new nationality underneath.

For more information as to which elections you can vote in, see the  icon list of nationalities eligible to register to vote [80.94KB] .

Change of name

  • If responding online, follow the instructions to type in your new name.

  • If responding via paper form, cross out your previous name(s) and write your new name(s) underneath.

After we receive and process your HEF response, we will send you a change of name form to complete and return with proof of your change of name (for example, a marriage certificate, civil partnership certificate, deed poll document or an amended birth certificate).

Change of voting method

If you are listed as voting in person, but want to change to vote by post or proxy, please cross out 'in person' and write 'by post' or 'by proxy' underneath. We will then send you the relevant application form to complete and return to arrange postal or proxy voting.

If you are listed as voting by post or by proxy, and want to change this to vote in person at your polling station, please cross out 'by post' or 'by proxy' write 'in person' underneath. We will then send you an absent voting cancellation request that you must complete and return to cancel your postal or proxy vote.

Change of open register preference

Under the 'included on the open register' column, it will say either 'yes' or 'no'.

If it says 'yes' next to your name, it means your details are currently on the open register, which is available for purchase by any person, company or organisation.

If it says 'no', it means your details are not included on the open register and only appear on the electoral register, which may only be used for specific, controlled purposes.

If you wish to change your open register preference, please do the following:

  • If responding online, follow the instructions for changing your preference

  • If responding by paper, cross out 'yes' or 'no' and write the appropriate change underneath

After we receive and process your HEF response, we will write to you to confirm your open register preference change.

A person has been listed on the HEF but they are deceased

We are very sorry for any distress that this may have caused. In order to remove the entry of a deceased person from our register, we need to have received either a copy of the death certificate or a formal notification.

We receive a weekly report from the registrar of deaths in Surrey and through the Tell Us Once Service. Unfortunately, notification of a death may not be received in time for us to be able to suppress a communication. We appreciate that this can be distressing for relatives.

Please contact the elections office to check if we are aware of the death.