What happens if you're not enrolled to vote and get caught?

In New Zealand, you must be enrolled to vote. If you are not enrolled you could be fined $100. That increases to $200 if you've been caught a second time. 

But prosecutions are rare.  

An OIA from Detective Inspector Craig Scott of the National Criminal Investigations Group found no one has been prosecuted in the past three elections, Fairfax reports. 

The good news is if you decide to enrol to vote and you haven't been enrolled before, you won't be fined for failing to enrol previously.

It's pretty easy to enrol to vote. This year you can cast your vote and enrol to vote at the same time just by turning up at an advance voting location. You don't even need your ID card. You can't do this on election day - September 23 - but you can for the rest of this week.

Electoral rolls can be accessed at places like public libraries and councils.

If, for safety reasons, you are worried about people having information about where you live then you can apply to be on the unpublished roll. You can apply for the roll online here. You need a letter from a lawyer, advocate, social worker or someone of standing in the community explaining your circumstances, or a copy of a restraining order, protection order or information from a police or corrections officer.

For more information on how to vote, take a look at our guide to voting.

To enrol either:

  • Go to an advance voting booth (find the nearest on this map)
  • Go to www.elections.org.nz to enrol online
  • Download a form to be returned via freepost, via fax or scanning
  • Visit a PostShop
  • Get an enrolment form sent to your house by calling 0800 36 76 56 or texting your address to 3676