Published: 16 August 2022

Preliminary and final election results

Here are the basic differences between preliminary and final vote counting.

All votes are counted on two occasions. On each occasion, the votes are checked several times. Vote counting is a public procedure. This means that any member of the public is permitted to come and observe the process.

Preliminary vote count

A preliminary vote count is a count of the votes for those parties that are expected to win seats in parliament. A preliminary distribution of seats between the parties is then made on the basis of this count.

Sweden’s municipalities carry out the preliminary vote count, which starts in the polling stations on election night and continues on the Wednesday after election day, when late-arriving advance voting ballots are counted.

In order to achieve a prompt result, all potentially invalid votes are excluded. These votes will be subsequently checked and may be deemed valid in the final vote count by the county administrative board.

Final vote count

The county administrative board carries out the final vote count, which begins on the Monday after election day. The votes for all parties and specific candidates are assessed and counted. When the results have been calculated, the final distribution of seats between the parties is determined, and Riksdag members and alternate members are appointed.

The Swedish Election Authority determines the result of the election with the Riksdag approximately one week after election day, and the county administrative boards determine the results of regional and municipal council elections approximately two weeks after election day.

These two vote counts are carried out in parallel. The final vote count begins on the Monday after election day – before the municipalities’ count of late-arriving advance voting ballots, which takes place on the Wednesday after election day.

Film about preliminary and final vote counting

This film is in Swedish. You can choose to view it with English subtitles.