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Report No. 255

B. Comparative Practices

16.5. In the European countries, independent candidates are allowed to contest in those countries that do not have the party-list system of proportional representation. Thus, thirteen countries allow independents to contests in national Parliamentary elections and include Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Lithuania, Malta, Romania, and the United Kingdom. These countries follow different voting models, which comprise of majority/plurality voting in single-member districts (France, UK); a single transferable vote system (Ireland, Malta); and mixed-member systems, combining single-member districts with multimember districts (Germany, Greece).

16.6. However, countries such as Belgium, Italy, Portugal and Spain that have closed-list systems, do not allow independent candidates.556

556. European Parliament, Directorate General for Internal Policies, Policy Department C: Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs, Independent Candidates in National and European Elections: Study (2013),
<> at para 3.2 at 19

16.7. Moreover, the requirements that an independent candidate must fulfil before being eligible to stand do not seem to be very onerous. In countries such as France and the UK, there is no requirement for independent candidates to get signatures endorsing their candidature during nomination; in five countries including Germany and Ireland, independents have to present nomination signatures whereas party candidates do not; and in four countries such as Greece and Hungary, both independents and parties require nomination signatures before they are eligible.557.

In Ireland, a monetary deposit is an alternative to the signature requiremen.- an independent candidate has to either provide signatures of 30 electors, or deposit €500 with the nomination.

557. Id, at 22

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