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General Elections in Ireland


A general election must be held in Ireland within 30 days of the dissolution of the Dáil. The procedure is, that the Clerk of the Dáil issues a writ to the returning officer in each constituency instructing him or her to hold an election.

The Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government appoints the polling day which must be between the 18th and 25th day (excluding Good Friday, Sundays and Public Holidays) after the issue of the writ. The Minister also appoints the polling period which must consist of at least 12 hours between 7.00 a.m. and 10.30 p.m.

If you are interested in reading about general elections in Ireland, you may also be interested in the following documents:

General election posters and signs

The law in Ireland forbids the erection of posters/signs on poles or other structures in public places unless you have the written permission of the owner of the pole or other structure in advance of putting up the posters/signs. Posters are only allowed to be erected for a certain specified time period before an election. Posters can be erected 30 days before the election or from the date of the polling day order for the election, whichever is the shorter period of time.

Following a general election, a party/candidate must remove posters within a seven day period. After that date, an on-the-spot fine of €150 is issued by your local authority in respect of each offence. Your local authority will remove the poster as the fine is issued. If a party/candidate has been issued with a fine and refuses to pay, they can be prosecuted in the District Court by your local authority to enforce payment.

Page edited: 3 February 2011



Related Documents

  • Bye-elections
    What is a bye-election and in what circumstances is a bye-election held?
  • Local Elections in Ireland
    Local elections in Ireland take place every 5 years and allow your community elect representatives to local government.
  • Dissolution of the Dáil
    This document describes the circumstances in which Dáil Éireann (lower house of the Irish parliament) can be dissolved.

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