Preferential Voting in Single Member Electorates - New South Wales

Electoral Authority: NSW Electoral Commission
Parliament which uses Preferential Voting Legislative Assembly (Lower House)
Name of Preferential Voting system Optional preferential
Formality/Informality points Formal

  • A number "1" is shown, once only, in or adjacent to a square opposite a candidate's name.
  • The elector may indicate further preferences if they wish.
  • Where the number "1" appears once only, the ballot paper is still formal even if there is a break or repeat in subsequent preferences.
  • A single tick or single cross in or adjacent to a square opposite a candidate's name is accepted as a first preference vote. If a number "1" is also shown on the ballot paper it takes precedence over the tick or cross.


  • The ballot paper is blank.
  • A tick or cross appears with numbers in other squares (other than the number "1").
Directions on the Ballot Paper (2003 Legislative Assembly election – with any number of candidates)

Place the number "1" in the square opposite the name of the candidate for whom you desire to give your first preference vote.

You may, if you wish, vote for additional candidates by placing consecutive numbers beginning with the number "2" in the squares opposite the names of those additional candidates in the order of your preference for them.
Casual Vacancies A casual vacancy is filled through a by-election.

Related New South Wales electoral information