F.A.Q.

 

General Information

 

What question has to be decided in the referendum?

 

·         Voters can decide about the following question:

 

„Do you want the European Union to be entitled to prescribe the mandatory settlement of non-Hungarian citizens in Hungary without the consent of the National Assembly?”

 

Who submitted the referendum question?

 

·         The referendum question was submitted to the National Election Commission by the Hungarian Government on 24 February 2016.

·         The decision of the National Election Commission on the authentication of the question can be read here, while the resolution of the Curia can be found here.

 

When is the national referendum valid and effective?

 

The national referendum is valid if more than half of the voters i.e.

·         those having Hungarian domicile and

·         “out-of-country” registered voters having no Hungarian domicile cast valid votes.

·         The national referendum is effective if more than half of the voters cast valid votes and gave the same answer to the question i.e. votes are not tied.

·         The number of voters on the electoral register is updated every day and can be found here: http:www.valasztas.hu/hu/ovi/735/735 16.html

 

Who can vote in the national referendum?

 

·         Hungarian citizens,

·         adults, who

·         reached the age of 18 or

·         became an adult by marriage before the age of 18 and

·         court did not decide on his/her exclusion from suffrage.

 

What is the cost of organising an election?

 

·         For the organisation of the referendum 4.9 billion HUF was allocated by the Parliament.

·         A large proportion of the costs are made up by things related to elections (e.g. manufacturing ballot papers and ballot boxes, IT and logistics costs, honoraria of the members of the election commission).

Information for Hungarian citizens having Hungarian domicile

 

Under what conditions am I allowed to vote on election day?

·         Ballots can be cast between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m. on Sunday 2 October 2016.

·         Only voters who are on the printed polling district electoral register are allowed to vote at the polling station.

·         Voters with Hungarian domicile will automatically be registered.

·         Voters have to provide proof of their

 

identity by

o   a valid identity card (old type booklet like Hungarian identification card or Hungarian temporary identification card can be expected as well),

o   Hungarian passport (Hungarian temporary passport can be excepted, too) or

o   Hungarian driving license or

o   detainees with registration forms in case of using mobile ballot box

 

            and address by

o   address card ( a receipt of declaration of address and an old book form identity card, which contains the permanent address.

o   Those detained can vote by registration card or

o   address card

 

            or their identification card by

o   an address card,

o   a certificate by authorities

o   a certificate about their personal identification number.

 

·         It is important to know that the acknowledgement of receipt (printed sheet of size A4) is not suitable for identification.

·         Voters then receive the stamped ballot, the envelope and acknowledge the reception by their signature.

·         Voting can be done by writing two crossing lines (X or +) into the circles “Yes” or “No”.

·         After voting the ballot paper can be put into the envelope. Then the ballot paper must be put into ballot box.

 

What happens if I still stand in line after 19:00 o’clock on election day? Am I not allowed to vote?

 

·         According to the law, voters standing in line at 19:00 o’clock on election day may cast their votes.

·         Voters arriving later than 19:00 o’clock to the polling station are not allowed to cast their votes.

 

I am a disabled person. What help can I ask for?

 

·         From 1 January 2014, voters with a disability may request the following assistance in exercising their voting rights:

 

o   notification in Braille transcription sent to their address,

o   simplified information material sent to their address,

o   use of a Braille voting template at the polling station or during mobile voting,

o   use of an accessible polling station.

 

·         Requests regarding the above mentioned application can be submitted to the local election office of his/her domicile in person or by mail or here. You can download the application form here.

·         You can submit your application for a step-free polling station to the local election office not later than 16.00 o’clock on Friday, 30 September 2016.

·         Requests for using a Braille voting template can be sent to the local election office not later than 16.00 o’clock 23 September.

·         If you have already applied (e.g. during the 2014 elections) for one of the above mentioned requests, it applies for this referendum as well.

·         Voters with a disability may request mobile ballot box after the day of election has been set.

·         A person chosen by you may help you while filling in the ballot paper, or if there is no such person present, two members of the polling station commission can be at your service.

 

Who can apply for a mobile ballot box, and how?

·         Applications for mobile voting can be submitted by voters

 

o   who are limited as to their movement due to their health condition, disability or

o   pre-trial detention or custodial sentence, and are only allowed to vote in prison. Applications for mobile voting for any other reasons (e.g. convenience) will be rejected by the National Election Office, or by the polling station commission.

 

·         In case of mobile voting two members of the polling station commission visit the voter at his/her given address (e.g. at hospital).

·         Mobile ballot box can be applied from the local election office till 16.00 o’clock the second day prior to election day (on Friday) 30 September 2016, or from the polling station commission where the voter is enrolled till 15.00 o’clock on election day (on Sunday) 2 October 2016.

The submission of the application form by proxy can be downloaded here.

·         If one would like to cast his vote not at his residence – or in another polling district – he/she can apply for a mobile ballot box for that address, too. In this case he/she has to register at the settlement concerned, where he changed district. Requesting mobile ballot box is only possible after changing polling district.

·         It is also important to note that who has already applied for a mobile ballot box, is not allowed to vote „normally” at the polling district, only by mobile voting.

 

 

How can I vote, if I am not at home on election day?

·         If a voter stays within the territory of Hungary on election day, but in the area of another polling district, different from the one according to his/her Hungarian address, can vote by changing polling district.

·         Requests for changing polling districts can be submitted to the local election office (municipal clerk) of his/her domicile by mail, or it can be requested even at the local election office per residence in person no later than 16.00 o’clock on Friday, 30 September 2016. The application form can be downloaded here.

·         The head of the local election office enrols the voter to the electoral roll concerned and de-lists him/her from the one of his/her domicile. It is also important to note that changing polling districts allow voters to cast their votes only for the candidate of his/her domicile.

 

What should voters having domicile in Hungary do, if they would like to vote abroad?

 

·         Requests for entry in the foreign representation register can be submitted by voters who will probably be abroad on election day at foreign representations (embassies, consulates). Contacts of Hungarian foreign representations and the date of voting can be found here.  

·         Requests for entry in the foreign representation register shall arrive to the municipality clerk at 16 o’clock 24 September 2016. Requests can be filed in person, via mail or here.

·         If requested, the municipal clerk enrols the voter to the foreign representation register and at the same time removes his/her name from the electoral roll of  his/her domicile.

Can Hungarian citizens having Hungarian domicile, but staying abroad vote via mail, or just at foreign representations?

 

·         Voters having Hungarian domicile and staying abroad may not cast their votes via mail, only in person at foreign representations.

 

When does voting take place at foreign representations?

·             The date of voting at foreign representations: 

    

Location

on the American continent

in Western European or Western African countries where the time difference is -1 hour or -2 hours compared to Central European time 

countries using the (Hungarian) Central European time zone, or those to the East of that

some countries (e.g.)

USA, Argentina, Canada

Ireland, Morocco, Great Britain, Portugal

Australia, Austria, Belgium, South-Africa, Germany, Romania, Switzerland, Serbia

election day

the day prior to election day (Saturday

election day ( Sunday) in Hungary

election day in Hungary(Sunday

starting time of voting  

6.00 o’clock local time

6.00 o’clock local time

6.00 o’clock local time

closing time of voting

19.00 o’clock local time

19.00 o’clock Central European (Hungarian) time

19.00 o’clock local time

 

What are the main characteristics of voting at foreign representation?

 

·         Before voting at foreign representations voters should identify themselves by a valid Hungarian identification card, Hungarian passport or Hungarian driving license, but contrary to domestic voting identification by an address card is not required for voting.

·         When voting ballot papers must be put and sealed in an envelope. Not doing so the ballot is not valid.

·         Mobile voting at foreign representations is not possible.

 

 How can homeless people vote?

 

·         In case a homeless person has a domicile of settlement rank he/she has the right to vote at the polling station designated in the settlement. The list of designated polling stations of different settlements can be found here.

·         In case a homeless person does not have a domicile of settlement rank either, he/she should file his/her application for registration to any local election office or the National Election Office. In this case he/she can vote via mail.

 

Are my details given to parties?

 

·         For the purpose of information the organiser of the referendum initiation and the parties forming groups in the National Assembly can obtain the names and addresses of enrolled voters against payment.

·         One has the right to prohibit the release of his/her data for information purpose.

Request for prohibition can be filed in person at the local election office as of residence, via mail or here.

·         If one has already requested the prohibition of his/her data (i.e. before the 2014 elections) for information purpose, it remains valid until its withdrawal, and there is no need for another application.

 

 

Voting of Hungarian citizens having no domicile in Hungary (out-of-country citizens)

 

Can Hungarian out-of-country citizens take part in the referendum?

 

·         Yes, they can. Under Article XXIII of the Hungarian Fundamental Law each Hungarian adult has the right to take part in the national referendum. Here you can see how many Hungarian citizens having no domicile in Hungary are enrolled in the central registration list.

 

Do those Hungarian out-of-country voters need to register again, who have already registered before or after the 2014 elections?

 

·         No, they do not. Those out-of-country citizens having no Hungarian domicile, who have registered before or after the 2014 elections are still on the electoral roll, thus they do not need to apply for enrolment again.

 

How long can you request to be registered?

 

·         The electoral registration is an on-going process.

·         However, only those out-of-country citizens are allowed to take part in the upcoming referendum, whose application for the electoral registration has arrived to the National Election Office latest by the 17 September 2016.

 

      How can you request to be registered?

 

·         Requests can be submitted via mail or here.

·         Requests for electoral registration can be submitted via mail and can be downloaded here. There are also instructions for completing the form (“Information on the submission of the request for enrolment to the central electoral register”) is useful to read. Information in English, German and French can be found on our website.

·         Requests can be printed in colour and in black and white, and can be copied free.

·         Requests should be mailed to: National Election Office, 1397 Budapest, Pf.: 547, Hungary

 

In what cases can I request to be registered?

 

·         Hungarian citizenship is needed for the electoral registration.        

·         Enrolment can be requested if the applicant

 

o   has a personal identification number (can be found on the address card) or

o   a valid Hungarian passport, or

o   can certify him/herself with a document of naturalization or

o   with a certificate of citizenship,

 

and

o   has neither a domicile nor a residence in Hungary,

o   is over 17 years of age or is over 16 and is married, and the marriage has been registered in Hungary,

 

and

o   has not been disfranchised by Hungarian court.

 

·         In order to vote in the upcoming national referendum the requests for registration should arrive to the National Election Office no later than 17 September 2016. Hungarian citizens can request their enrolment, but only adult voters are allowed to take part in the election.

 

·         Whether the voter is enrolled through registration or is automatically registered in the electoral register depends on what domicile or residence he/she has, according to the Hungarian address register. Regarding this issue the following table provides a good guidance:

 

 

 

domicile

temporary residence

type of enrolment

1.

Hungarian address

Hungarian address

automatic

2.

Hungarian address

none

automatic

3.

foreign address

Hungarian address

registration!

4.

foreign address

none

registration!

5.

none

Hungarian address

automatic

6.

none

none

registration!

7.

if not enrolled in the address register

registration!

 

o   e.g. if the Hungarian voter is enrolled by his/her foreign address in the address register (address printed in the address card), he/she should register in order to exercise his/her voting rights, even if he/she has (3. row) or does not have (4. row) a temporary residence.

o   Only those can be enrolled in the electoral register, who according to the address register are not registered (7. row) or have neither domicile nor residence in Hungary (6. row).

·         Those who have already registered before or after the parliamentary election in 2014 do not need to apply for registration before the upcoming referendum.

 

How many people have already been enrolled for the elections, and what do we know about them?

 

·         The National Election Office makes the number of received applications - from those having no Hungarian domicile - for registration available on its website and updates them daily.

·         Who registers from a country, where dual citizenship is banned (Austria, Slovakia, Ukraine), can find his/her postal address, without indicating the country, under the label “Total number of applicants from countries banning dual citizenship”.

 

Currently I live abroad. I do not have a Hungarian domicile, but prior to the elections I will move to Hungary. Do I have to register now, or shall I automatically be enrolled?

 

·         If you receive a Hungarian domicile until latest 30 September 2016, you do not need to register, you will be enrolled automatically.

 

      Does the number of out-of-country citizens count to the number needed to a valid referendum?

 

·         Yes, it does. The national referendum is valid, if more than half of all voters i.e.

o   the voters with Hungarian domicile and

o   registered enrolled out-of-country voters having no Hungarian domicile

           cast valid votes.

 

How can enrolled voters receive the voting package?

 

·         The National Election Office mails the voting package to the address (in Hungary or abroad) that has been indicated in the application form by the Hungarian voter, who has already registered, and has no Hungarian domicile.

·         Voters may ask, in the application for registration, to collect the voting package in person. In this case it can be collected during working hours on weekdays two weeks prior to election day.

 

o   in the single member constituencies,

o   in designated Hungarian municipalities close to the border, or

o   at designated foreign representations of Hungary

 

I would like to receive the voting package elsewhere as I did in 2014. What shall I do?

 

·         Voters may change their address, where they would like to receive the ballot paper or can do so in connection with their already given details.

·         This application – like the one for enrolment – can be filled in and submitted via mail or here.

 

What does the voting package consist of?

 

·         The voting package consists of the following:

 

o   the ballot paper for voting via mail (that is valid without a stamp),

o   a declaration form needed to identify the voter,

o   an envelope to put the ballot into (inner envelope),

o   a self-addressed envelope, where the address of the National Election Office has already been indicated, and can be mailed free of charge within Hungary,

o   information on how to vote.

 

What is the procedure of voting by mail?

 

·         The procedure of voting by mail is as follows:

 

o   the voter fills in the ballot paper of postal voting,

o   places the ballot paper into the inner envelope,

o   closes the inner envelope,

o   fills in the declaration of identification

o   places the inner envelope and the declaration of identification into the reply envelope and closes it.

 

The vote is not valid if

o   the inner envelope or the reply envelope is not closed

o   the identification declaration is not in the reply envelope,

o   the small envelope is not in the reply envelope,

o   the identification declaration is not filled in or is not signed,

o   the data on the identification declaration are not equal with the ones registered,

o   the ballot paper is not in the small envelope,

o   the ballot paper is not filled in,

o   the voter did not vote with the sign + or X,

o   the voter voted with both Yes and No.

 

How can enrolled voters return the voting package?

 

·         The voting package

o   can be mailed free; it should arrive at the National Election Office until 24:00 o’clock the day prior to election day (1 October, Saturday),

o   can be submitted at any of the foreign representations ( the Consulate General in Beregszász, Csíkszereda, Kolozsvár, Szabadka and Ungvár are open with extended office hours) during working hours on weekdays two weeks prior to or on election day, between 9.00 and 16.00o’clock 17 September and 1 October 2016,
- Csíkszereda 06.00-22.00
(on September 30th 06.00-24.00)
- Kolozsvár 09.00-19.00
- Szabadka 07.30-18.00
- Beregszász 07.00-17.30
- Ungvár 07.00-17.30

or on election day 2 October.

o   can be submitted at election offices of any single member constituency between 06.00 and 19:00 o’ clock on election day (2 October, Sunday).

 

Is voting by mail safe?

 

·         The fairness of voting is carried by the collective responsibility of election bodies and the voters - contrary to voting at polling stations, where insuring the legality of voting is first of all the task of the polling station commission. Even voters should meet their responsibilities by filling in the ballot paper and by mailing the voting documents.

 

      Do those not wanting to take part in the referendum need to cancel their registration?

 

·         Those Hungarian voters having no domicile in Hungary who do not want to participate in the referendum do not need to do anything: postal ballot paper needn’t be sent back to or collected at the foreign representation.

·         Those voters with no Hungarian domicile can apply for deletion from the electoral roll at any time. In this case they cannot vote in the upcoming elections unless they reregister again.

 

 

Last modify: 2016.09.19.