Writ of election

Writ of election

A writ of election is a writ issued by the government ordering the holding of a special election for a governmental office.

In the United Kingdom and in Canada, this is the "only" way of holding an election for the House of Commons. When the government wants to or is required to dissolve parliament, a writ of election is issued for each constituency (in the UK) or electoral district (in Canada).

In the United States, this writ is issued mainly by state governors for filling vacancies in the United States House of Representatives, the United States Senate, or the states' own legislatures.

In Australia, the writs are issued by the Governor-General for the House of Representatives and by the respective state Governors for the Senate. State governors also issue the writs for elections in the state and territorial legislatures. The writs are issued to the relevant Electoral Officer or Returning Officer, as the case may be, who must return them after the election has been held within a fixed period.

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  • writof election — writ of election n. pl. writs of election A writ issued by a governor or other executive authority requiring that an election be held, especially a special election to fill a vacancy. * * * …   Universalium

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