What if I didn't vote?

If you fail to vote you will receive an 'apparent failure to vote' notice asking for an explanation.

Didn’t vote in the October 2016 local council elections?

In January and February 2017 apparent failure to vote notices were sent to people who appeared not to have voted in the 2016 council elections. The period to respond to this notice has now closed.

If you received a notice and your excuse for failing to vote or explanation of how, where and when you voted was considered sufficient, then no further action will be taken.

Who must vote?

You must vote in council elections for your principal place of residence, where you are enrolled on the State electoral roll.

You will not be fined for not voting if, on 26 August 2016, you:

  • owned a property and were on the voters’ roll in a council area that you didn’t live in*
  • were a council-enrolled voter*
  • were aged 70 years or over on 22 October 2016.

*Voting is compulsory for all voters under 70 years of age enrolled for Melbourne City Council elections.

What if I didn’t respond or provide a sufficient excuse?

If you did not respond to the apparent failure to vote notice or if your excuse for failing to vote was not considered sufficient, you will receive an infringement notice with a fine of $78 (half a penalty unit).

You must pay this fine or take other action within 42 days of the date of the infringement notice. The matter will become more serious and costly if you ignore this notice.

You have the following options if you receive an infringement notice:

Information on how to seek legal assistance is also available.

What if I fail to pay the fine?

If you do not pay your fine by the due date then you will be sent a penalty reminder notice, requiring you to pay the fine plus costs ($22.60). This notice will give you a further 42 days to pay or take other action.

The same rights and responsibilities and payment options apply to a penalty reminder notice as an infringement notice.

If you do not pay your fine during the penalty reminder stage, your details will be provided to the Infringements Court (external link) for further action. The Infringements Court will then issue an enforcement order.

I need more assistance

Call 1300 551 575 during business hours to speak to a customer service representative.

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