How many municipal councillors need to be elected as part of municipal elections?

The number of municipal councillors depends on the municipality's number of inhabitants. This is always an odd number.

Municipal councils, including members of the College of Aldermen, are composed as follows:

  • of 7 members in municipalities with a population of up to 999 inhabitants;
  • of 9 members in municipalities of 1,000 to 2,999 inhabitants;
  • of 11 members in municipalities of 3,000 to 5,999 inhabitants;
  • of 13 members in municipalities of 6,000 to 9,999 inhabitants;
  • of 15 members in municipalities of 10,000 to 14,999 inhabitants;
  • of 17 members in municipalities of 15,000 to 19,999 inhabitants;
  • of 19 members in municipalities of 20,000 inhabitants or more; with the exception of the municipal council of the City of Luxembourg, which is composed of 27 members.

The number of municipal councils allocated to each municipality is determined by Grand Ducal regulation. Voters have as many votes as there are councillors to elect.

The number of municipal councillors allocated to municipalities resulting from a merger is set by the respective law on mergers.

What are the 2 different election modes?

Each municipality or part of a municipality with regard to certain municipalities resulting from a merger form an electoral constituency. All the voters of a municipality participate in the election of members of the municipal council.

In municipalities of the Grand Duchy with a population of under 3,000 inhabitants, elections take place according to the system of relative majority. Each voter has as many votes as there are councillors to elect. Voters vote by writing a cross (+ or x) in the box reserved for this purpose after the name of each candidate for whom they vote.

In municipalities with at least 3,000 inhabitants, elections take place according to the proportional voting system. Each voter has as many votes as there are councillors to elect. They may allocate two votes to each of the candidates, up to the total number of votes that they may cast. By filling out the white circle of the box at the top of the list, voters allocate one vote to each candidate on that list. Each box ticked (+ or x) after the name of a candidate counts as one vote for that candidate.

Must I vote?

Voting is mandatory for all registered voters. Voters may not be represented by proxy. No one can vote unless they are registered on the electoral lists by the 87th day prior to election day, subject to the registrations that occur following a claim or an appeal provided for by law. Citizens of Luxembourg are automatically registered on the electoral list of their municipality of residence as soon as they meet the legal conditions to vote. People living in a different municipality than the one where they are asked to vote at the time of the election and voters above 75 years of age have the right to be excluded.

As a Luxembourg national domiciled abroad, am I obliged to vote?

Luxembourg nationals must be domiciled in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg to vote in municipal elections. 

What shall I do if I am unable to vote on election day?

Those who are unable to vote in the election must explain the reason for their absence to their local State Prosecutor, and provide the necessary supporting documents. Unjustified abstentions are punishable by a fine. In the event of repeat offences, the penalty is increased.

The following persons have the right to be excluded:

  • voters who, at the time of the election, live in a municipality other than the one in which they are supposed to vote;
  • voters who are over 75 years of age.
Is it possible to vote by proxy?

No, registered voters may not be replaced.

What are the consequences of abstention from voting (financial penalties)?

Abstaining without justification is punishable by a penalty ranging from 100 to 250 euros. In the event of recurrence within five years of the sentence, the penalty ranges from 500 to 1,000 euros.

Who is excluded from the vote?

The following people may not be voters or stand as candidates:

  • people who have been convicted of criminal offences;
  • people who are deprived of the right to vote as a result of correctional sanctions;
  • adults under guardianship.
When is a ballot deemed null and void?

Any ballots other than those that are permitted by law are null and void; ballots that cast more votes than the number of councillors to elect; those whose form or size is altered, that contain a paper or an object, or those whose author may be identified by any sign or erasure unauthorised by law. Null and void ballots are not taken into account to set the number of votes.

Does electronic voting exist in Luxembourg?

No, electronic voting does not exist in Luxembourg.

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