A rumour that you can 'request a new vote' if you've changed your mind on same-sex marriage is untrue

Photo: William West / AFP / Getty Images.

Claims on social media that you can now request a new vote in the same-sex marriage postal survey if you’ve “changed your mind” are untrue, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) says.

After sending out 16 million postal ballots over the last fortnight, the ABS opened up requests for a new ballot papers yesterday for people whose survey form had gone missing or was damaged.

Requests for new survey materials close on Friday, October 20, at 6pm (local time).

The news led to claims, shared on social media, that people could ask for a new survey form if they’d “changed their mind” after submitting their vote.

But the ABS says no, with a spokesperson telling Business Insider: “Changing your mind about your response is not a valid reason to request a replacement form in the Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey.”

If your ballot paper hasn’t turned up, or you’ve moved home, and didn’t update your address on the electoral roll, or have a damaged or spoiled form, you can call 1800 572 113 or request a new one online at marriagesurvey.abs.gov.au.

ABS deputy Australian statistician Jonathan Palmer said the quickest and easiest way to contact them and request a replacement form is via their website.

“You will be sent a replacement form, and the original form will be made invalid,” he said.

In the fortnight since the mailout began, there have been widespread reports of ballot papers being found dumped or not delivered into letterboxes.

The survey closes at 6pm on November 7, with the result announced on November 15.

“We’re strongly encouraging people to post their completed surveys back to the ABS by 27 October 2017,” Palmer said.

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