Guidance for (Acting) Returning Officers administering a UK Parliamentary election in Great Britain

Relevant legislation

Relevant legislation

This guidance is based on, and should be read in accordance with, the requirements set out in the following legislation (as amended):

  • Representation of the People Acts 1983, 1985 and 2000
  • Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000
  • Representation of the People (England and Wales) Regulations 2001
  • Representation of the People (Scotland) Regulations 2001
  • Parliamentary Constituencies (Scotland) Order 2005
  • Electoral Administration Act 2006
  • Parliamentary Constituencies and Assembly Electoral Regions (Wales) Order 2006
  • Returning Officers (Parliamentary Constituencies) (England and Wales) Order 2023
  • Political Parties and Elections Act 2009
  • Fixed Term Parliament Act 2011
  • Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013
  • Elections Act 2022
  • The Voter Identification Regulations 2022
  • The Assistance with Voting for Persons with Disabilities (Amendments) Regulations 2022
  • Representation of the People (Postal and Proxy Voting etc.) (Amendment) Regulations 2023

The list above includes only the legislation that makes provision in areas that this guidance relates to and that is currently in force.

Data protection legislation applies to the processing of all personal data. (A)ROs are personally responsible for ensuring that they comply with the requirements of data protection legislation. We have published guidance to support you in meeting your obligations under data protection legislation as it relates to your electoral administration responsibilities.

You are also required to have regard to the public sector equality duty contained in Section 149 of the Equality Act 2010 when carrying out your duties.

As RO you are also required to have regard to the Electoral Commission's guidance on accessibility.

(A)ROs in Wales must also have regard to the Welsh Language Act 1993 and the Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011, which require services in Wales to be delivered equally in English and in Welsh. 

Last updated: 19 December 2023