Good afternoon all
I have been resident in France for nearly 4 years.
I am currently on the electoral roll in the UK as an Overseas Voter, and in France for local and European elections
I have recently been in contact with my ex local MP with regard to Dog Passports and Brexit. She quite kindly replied with some useful information, however she added the following
" Further to your recent email, firstly I am required to advise that ordinarily parliamentary protocol would prevent me from assisting you as you are no longer on the electoral role for your old address "
Now I was always under the impression, possibly wrongly, that if you became an overseas voter you were linked to the last constituency where you were resident.
Now if my MP , who is a rabid ERG member, is correct I have no access to representation in the UK. As i still have to make tax declarations in the UK, I feel a Boston Tea Party moment coming on.
Has anybody got any experience of this situation.
I don’t think your rabid MP is correct. I understand that for 15 years you remain with the constituency where you were last on Uk electoral roll. But then when was truth and fact ever something that ERG’ers bother about?
I still write grumpy letters to Jeremy Corbyn as my last MP, and nobody has said I shouldn’t. Perhaps copy the attached to Mr Rabid?
You should still be on the electoral roll of the constituency in which you lived prior to living in France. That was certainly the case for me. It is, however, necessary to renew yearly but you should have been receiving reminders from the council. I voted in the referendum and in general elections having been out of the UK for much longer than you.
Great link from Jane.
I wrote the MP of my last constituency Rebecca Long -Bailey and clearly stated I was now resident in France. She replied to me as a constituent with no reference to my now living in France (not that I thought her reply was worth the keyboard it was typed on!).
*That would have been about £7.50 plus postage £3.00 so a tidy answer for the cost of a €1,60 stamp?
Clearly your MP is mistaken in her beliefs as you are entitled to be registered as an overseas voter at your last UK address for 15 years.
Perhaps a politely worded letter to her, or indeed to the lady’s constituency party chairman, would aid her understanding of her duty to represent you as one of her lawful constituents.
No stamps necessary it was all done by email.
What really rubs salt into the wound is still being required to pay UK Income Tax after having been deprived of the right to vote in respect of the formulation of the government that spends said tax payments.
It is truly a case of Taxation without Representation, and is thus fundamentally wrong.
In order to be recognised as a parliamentary constituent you must be on the electoral roll, and to be put on the roll you have to register with the local authority’s electoral officer.
When you are on the roll you will get an annual reminder to re-register, and that will be sent to your French address if you ask for that to be done when you apply.
If you write to your MP you will get a reply to the address on the electoral roll, not to your French address AFAIK.
I have to correct you on that one Peter. Before the 15 year rule clicked in I contacted my UK MP about various matters and always received a written reply by post to my address here in France.
By the way; Whilst one has to be registered as an overseas elector at the old UK address, it is possible to ask for that entry not to appear on the publicly available version of the electoral roll.
I stand corrected, Robert.
My constituency MP is Mark François who, despite his possible French ancestry, or possibly because of it, is not obviously a Europhile and always writes to our Essex maison secondaire
Many thanks for all the replies, especially Jane’s.
I have read the link and I consider it answers the question.
I have been particularly annoyed by her response, as I consider this government are constantly riding ruff shod over peoples democratic rights and just totally ignoring the law where they find it inconvenient.
I will be taking this further .
Again thanks for confirming my thoughts
Have a good day
As they say Andy, Rule Britannia, Britannia waves the rules
Good for you Andy, and I wish you every success.
It is important that our elected representatives should be corrected when they are clearly in error.
Latest score ANDY 1 - MP 0
My first port of call was the Electoral Services Manager in my constituency.
I received a reply the same day confirming that I was correct in my assumptions, backed up by Jane’s link.
They have contacted my MP’s office to advise them of the inaccurate comment my MP made.
I have again e-mailed her and am waiting to see if I receive a response.
I hold my breath
Have a sunny day
Good for you. Let us know what she says please.
Will do Mandy.
It will be nice to see if she acknowledges her error.
If you don’t get a response and apology I would be seriously tempted to forward copies to a left leaning newspaper!