Requirements to vote in Uruguay

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Decide your future! Get ready for the votes, know the Requirements to vote in Uruguay, Do your duty and assert your right.

The exercise of the vote according to the Uruguayan Constitution is obligatory and universal, the law guarantees that it is secret and must be exercised personally, of course, the precautions requested by the electoral court must be complied with, which is the accredited institution for the purposes of suffrage. , you can exercise this right by presenting the civic registration, this document enables you to exercise the vote.

In this article you will find simple information about the power of voting in Uruguay.

Requirements to vote

Voters are those people who are “Qualified to vote”, through registration in the national civic registry, under the guidance of the Electoral Court and in accordance with the Electoral Law.

Well, the main requirements to vote in Uruguay are:

  • Being over 18 years
  • Present the Civic Credential

An important note can be read in the current electoral law, since in the previous law “citizen” was said instead of “persons” and when it was modified in 1934, non-citizen foreigners who hold the residence certificate.

What I need?

The Civic ID, simply called Credential, is the proof that is used in Uruguay to identify citizens entitled to vote.

It is issued by Departmental Electoral Officeswhich since 2015, provide service to the public both in Montevideo and in the interior of the country.

From Monday to Friday between 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

In the capital city, the office is located at 25 de mayo 567, Esquina Ituzaingó and in the interior, in addition to the Departmental Electoral Offices, the Permanent Delegate Registration Offices of Pando, Las Piedras and Ciudad de la Costa.

All persons who are 18 years of age, or about to reach it, must manage it before the next departmental elections.

To apply, you must submit:

  • Public or private document with photograph, which validates the data of your birth certificate.
  • If you were born in Uruguayan territory:
    • Birth Certificate or Certificate, issued by the Civil Status Registry.
  • If you are born outside the territory of the Republic:
    • Testimony of birth certificate endorsed and legalized, or testimony of the registration of your birth in the book of foreigners of the Civil Status Registry.
    • Birth Certificate Testimony of your Uruguayan father or mother.
    • looming certificateissued by the Electoral Court during the registration period
  • If you are a legal citizen:
    • Citizen Lettera issued by the Electoral Court, with more than three years of being granted.
  • If you are a foreign national, are not a legal citizen, and do not wish to obtain legal citizenship:

How are the elections held?

The electoral cycle in Uruguay is repeated every five years, with the following schedule:

  • In the month of June the internal electionsthe vote of the citizens is voluntary and in it the only candidates for the Presidency of the Republic are chosen, from the catalog of pre-candidates presented by each party.
  • In the month of October, specifically on the last Sunday of the month, the First round of national elections, with mandatory citizen participation. The President and Vice President are elected. Also, all the senators and representatives.

If no presidential formula achieves an absolute majority, activation will be given to:

  • In November, last Sunday, at Ballotageis a second electoral round between the two most voted presidential candidates.
  • In the month of May of the following year, on the second Sunday, are held Departmental and municipal elections: Departmental Mayors, Departmental Boards, Mayors and Councilors are elected.

What is the Uruguayan electoral system?

We understand by electoral systems, the agreements and voting systems, endorsed by the constitution of each country, which details who and how the positions of power are elected.

Since 1996, the Uruguayan electoral system has worked with the figure of political parties, who must be registered with the Electoral Court, after several processes, including: internal elections and through the vote of the voters, select candidates for the following public charges:

  1. Candidate for the Presidency of the Republic
  2. Vice Presidential Candidate
  3. Candidates for the deliberative bodies of each political party.
  4. Candidates for Departmental Mayors

Additionally, in some places, the representatives of the Municipal Councils, the representatives before the Social Welfare Bank, and the authorities of the University of the Republic are elected, as well as the faculties that compose it.

Voting procedure

Prior to the elections, the Electoral Court, distributes to the citizens or voters in electoral circuits, which obliges them to vote in the circuit assigned to them, according to their place of residence, and the number and series of their Credential. civic.

In the cases that the voter is exercising as a member of the polling stations, custodians or similar, a situation that limits them to move easily to the assigned circuit, they can exercise their right and duty as Observed voting. This special condition has mechanisms to confirm the validity of the data. Previously, this observance was extended to other citizens, but it was complicated when the votes were counted and caused a delay in the publication of the results .

The voting system is not electronic, it could be said that it is manual. At the time of voting, you must:

  1. Present the Civic Credential,
  2. Take the envelope with a numbered strip, which contains the voting sheet, which is where the names and photographs of the candidates are located,
  3. Enter the «secret room», select the candidate of your choice, (a time of 2 minutes is given for this action),
  4. Place the sheet in the envelope and leave,
  5. Separate the strip with the number from the envelope, in view of the observation of the table members,
  6. Deposit the envelope inside the ballot box,
  7. Deliver the numbered strip to the corresponding board member (president) and have his Civic Credential stamped, guarantee that he fulfilled his duty.

When the responsible body declares the closing of the day, those in charge of the polling stations will begin to count the votes, in the presence of the members of all the parties in contention, the publication of the result of the elections is exclusive to the responsible body.

It should be noted that the detachment of the number of the voting envelope must not be done, neither before nor inside the secret room, doing so will lead to annul the procedure and carry it out again.

Where do you vote?

In the Electoral Circuits, there are Electoral Boards, among their functions is the allocation of premises, where the Vote Reception Commissions will be installed.

The criteria for the selection of venues is that, in the first place, they are public, with the exception of those used by the nation’s security forces (Armed Forces or Police) and that they have adequate conditions for voting, with preference that is easily accessible to voters, such as ramps for the disabled or elderly.

Private premises may be selected, free of charge, if the public places were not enough or did not have adequate conditions, with prior notification from the Electoral Boards to their owners or managers.

In the premises for voting, a closed room, compartment or booth will be set up, popularly known as a «secret room», which must have a single door connected to the rest of the polling place, the rest of the doors that exist must be closed by the President and Secretary of the tables.

This «secret room» will have adequate furniture and lighting, to facilitate the choice by the voter.

Why is it important to vote?

Voting is a right. It is an opportunity to make the decision to select, among a long list of plans, the one that seems most real and feasible to us, for the development and progress of a country, in all its sectors.

It is time to be sensible, aware, that expressions as citizens are heard, whoever is selected, will be the representative of a nation before the rest of the world, will be given a bit of the future of the country, hence that decision represents a great responsibility for all citizens.


Voting is not indicative of belonging to a political party, it is our participation as citizens, according to our ideals, needs and desires, political, social, progress.

Choosing among the range of proposals and people, the one that is closest and most convenient, to satisfy the present needs and future development of a nation, state or community.

Votes allow us to reward those who do well and punish those who don’t.

you know the Requirements to vote in Uruguay, do not stop exercising your right, your vote can make a difference.

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