Voting in municipal elections

Dutch and other EU citizens are allowed to vote in municipal elections, provided that they meet the requirements. Citizens from non-EU countries are also allowed to vote if they have lived legally in the Netherlands for at least 5 years before the election. Municipal elections take place every 4 years. 

Last updated 7 October 2021

Who can vote in municipal elections?

  • You must be at least 18 years of age.  
  • You must not be excluded from voting (in Dutch).  
  • You must be a resident of a municipality. You must have the right to vote in the municipality where you are registered on the day when the candidates are nominated, i.e. 44 days before the election.  
  • Residents without EU citizenship must have lived legally in the Netherlands for at least 5 years before the election. 
  • Employees of foreign embassies or consulates – as well as their family members – do not have the right to vote. An exception is made for employees or family members with Dutch nationality, who are allowed to vote.

The Kiesraad (Electoral Council) provides more information about the eligibility requirements for voting in municipal elections.

Voting in municipal elections

Bear the following things in mind when voting: 

At least 14 days before the election: 

A stempas (polling card) in Dutch will be sent to you at your home address. You must take the polling card, together with proof of your identity (link in Dutch), to the stemabureau (polling station).  

At least 4 days before the election: 

You will receive the list of candidates, including the addresses of the polling stations.  

Proxy voting: 

If you are unable to vote in person, for example because you have to work or are on holiday, you can authorise another voter to cast your vote on your behalf (in Dutch).

Laws and regulations (in Dutch)

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