These changes will come into force in November 2023 but will only take effect after 7 May 2024. This means they will not apply to the Police and Crime Commissioner and City Council elections on 2 May 2024.

Changes to voting rights

In England, the general right of European Union (EU) citizens to register, vote, and stand in UK elections will be removed, except for certain groups:

  • 'Qualifying EU citizens' - Citizens from EU countries with reciprocal agreements with the UK, currently Luxembourg, Poland, Portugal, and Spain (referred to as the EU4).
  • 'EU citizens with retained rights' - EU citizens from other EU countries who were legally resident in the UK before 31 December 2020 (referred to as the EU20).

Note: Citizens from Ireland, Malta, or Cyprus will retain their voting rights in all UK elections while resident in the UK.

The electoral services team at Rugby Borough Council will:

  • Review the eligibility of EU citizens as part of an Eligibility Confirmation and Review (ECR) process.
  • Inform 'Qualifying EU citizens' and 'EU citizens with retained rights' of their continued eligibility to remain registered, requiring no action from them.
  • Update application processes for EU citizens to meet the new eligibility criteria.

Further details will be provided when the Government finalises arrangements for EROs.

Changes to candidacy rights

  • Changes to candidacy rights for EU citizens will be effective from 7 May 2024. EU citizens elected before this date can remain in office for their full term.
  • After this date, EU citizens standing as candidates must have been legally resident in the UK before 31 December 2020, or be from an EU4 country, to be eligible.