Guidance for Candidates and Agents at UK Parliamentary general elections in Great Britain

The deposit

For a candidate’s nomination to be valid, the sum of £500 must be deposited with the (Acting) Returning Officer by the deadline for nominations, by 4pm, 19 working days before the poll. The deposit can be made using:1

  • cash (British pounds only)
  • a UK banker’s draft

The (Acting) Returning Officer may also accept a deposit made by a building society cheque, a debit or credit card or an electronic funds transfer. However, they may refuse to do so. If you are considering paying the deposit in one of these ways, you should discuss with the (Acting) Returning Officer at the earliest opportunity whether the payment method is acceptable.

If the (Acting) Returning Officer allows the deposit to be paid by credit or debit card, there may be a fee charged by the bank or credit card company for the transaction, in which case you will be required to pay any additional fees as well as the £500 deposit.

Candidates who poll more than 5% of the total valid votes cast in the constituency will have their deposit returned. Those candidates who have polled less than, or equal to, 5% of the total valid votes cast will lose their deposit.

Last updated: 4 December 2023