What Happens If You Don’t Vote?
Ever wondered what happens if you don’t vote?
The answer is simply nothing.
If you don’t vote you have not shown preference for anyone standing in the election, or any side in a referendum campaign. Your vote will not be counted for either side or directly affect the result.
However, it is sometimes true that some campaigns do better if turnout is low in particular demographics. It is also the case that in many constituencies in 2019 there were more non-voters than votes for the winning candidate.
You won’t be fined or arrested for not voting, although councils can technically fine you if you are asked to register and do not do so. You will not be fined if you have a valid reason for not registering, for example a long stay in hospital, or you have severe learning difficulties (more info on this here and here).
Does my vote get transferred?
No. If you don’t vote your vote does not get transferred to anyone else. You just become another statistic of those that did not turn up.
But I don't agree with any of the options on the ballot paper!
We suggest ‘Blank Voting’ or spoiling your ballot, rather than abstaining, if you do not agree with any of the options on the ballot paper.