The postal service in elections

The involvement of a postal operator is also essential for the smooth running of the electoral process.

Sociedad Estatal Correos y Telégrafos, Sociedad Anónima, has the status of operator designated by the State for the provision of the universal postal service and the Government may impose public service obligations on it, when necessary to safeguard the proper running of electoral processes (Article 22.5 of Law 43/2010).

This imposition has been carried out in recent processes by agreement of the Council of Ministers.

The obligations imposed in these agreements are those actions that have to be carried out once the process has been called and which are especially transcendental for its operation, due to the urgency and characteristics of the deliveries and the relevance implied by the custody of the electoral documentation.

These obligations and actions relate to:

The vote of embarked personnel, personnel of the Armed Forces embarked or in exceptional situations linked to national defence.

The vote of inmates in penitentiary centres.

Mailings made by the Electoral Register Office.

Electoral advertising mailings by political parties.

The collection of electoral documentation at polling stations

The imposition of these obligations must be subject to compensation, i.e. no costs should be borne directly by those involved in the electoral process who use postal services. This is not to say that they are costless, as they are borne by the electoral budget.