Religious exemption from voting.

Abdullah made this Freedom of Information request to Victorian Electoral Commission

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Dear Victorian Electoral Commission, in wondering can you be exempt from voting on religious grounds if not what advice do you have for me as it is not acceptable in my religion to vote in democratic elections.

FOI, Victorian Electoral Commission

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[1]Victorian Electoral Commission
Level 11, 530 Collins Street Melbourne Victoria 3000



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CV, Victorian Electoral Commission

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Dear Elector,

Thank you for your query in relation to exemption from voting due to
religious reasons.

For your information, an elector may be excused for failing to vote at a
specific election if they provide a sufficient excuse. Current Victorian
legislation (Local Government Act 2020) does not specifically state that
the holding of a religious belief that precludes an entitled elector from
voting is a sufficient excuse. This differs from Federal legislation which
contains a specific compulsory voting exemption based on religious

However, it is at the discretion of the Prosecution Officer what is deemed
a sufficient excuse for not voting. If it is the act of actually voting
that is precluded by your religious beliefs, non-voter would be required
to provide evidence of their religious belief and an explanation of why
this belief precludes them from voting at an election. This information
would need to be provided in relation to each election for which they are
entitled to vote and fail to vote.

In relation to State or Council elections or by-elections, if an elector
chooses not to vote and do not provide the Victorian Electoral Commission
(VEC) with a sufficient reason in writing in relation to their failure to
vote, or do not pay the penalty amount, the matter may subsequently
proceed to Court. They may then also be asked by the Court to provide
evidence of their beliefs and/or further information to support your

We hope this information is of assistance to you.

Kind regards,


[1]Victorian Electoral Commission
Compulsory Voting Enforcement

Level 11, 530 Collins Street Melbourne Victoria 3000
T 1300 551 575
[2][email address]


The VEC acknowledges the Traditional Owners of the land.




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