In Brief

US election: When will the UK know the results?

The essential timetable to who votes and when as America chooses between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump

Election Day is finally here. By tomorrow, the United States should know if it is President Hillary Clinton or a President Donald Trump.

Clinton's supporters will be able to breathe a little easier in the knowledge most polls give her a buffer of a few points, but she is still far from a sure bet.

Trump's pathway to the White House is far trickier – the electoral map shows the Republican needs to win all of the battleground states to reach the necessary 270 electoral vote threshold, while Clinton needs just one. However, there is still everything to play for and anything can happen.

So how will election night unfold?

When do the polls close?

Rules differ between states, but most close at 7pm local time. Voting spans six time zones, so the last to close will be on the west coast, which will be around 3am in the UK.

 When will we get exit poll predictions?

The first exit poll results, from the eastern states, could arrive as early as 1am UK time. However, there could be as many as a dozen states where the result is too close to call to rely on them, says the Daily Telegraph.

Where will the first results come from?

They already have – but don't get excited, they represent fewer than 60 votes.

Dixville Notch, in New Hampshire, prides itself on often being the first place in the US to declare due to its tiny population – 12 at the last count – and its unusual tradition of opening its polling station at the stroke of midnight.

The result of eight voters this year handed Clinton her first victory. The Democrat won the backing of four locals to Trump's two, with one vote for Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson - and one voter scribbling down the name of 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney on their ballot paper.

Four votes might not carry a lot of electoral weight, but superstitious Clinton backers will take heart from the result, CNN reports, as voters in Dixville Notch "have correctly picked the eventual winner in three of the last four contests".

Two other New Hampshire hamlets also practise midnight voting, with Clinton notching up a second win in Hart's Location with 17 votes to Trump's 14. But the Republican nominee got his first taste of victory in nearby Millfield, where he crushed Clinton by 16 votes to four.

 When will we know who has won?

If there is a clear winner, we should know by about 4am UK time on Wednesday 9 November. To guarantee victory, the winner will need 270 Electoral College votes.

 What if it is too close to call?

The result could be delayed if it is so close that it becomes necessary to count every vote, while legal challenges over election procedure could also slow things down.

In the unlikely event that each side wins 269 Electoral College votes, the House of Representatives will decide who will be president.

 When will President Clinton or President Trump start work?

A "quirk" of the US electoral system means the results are not official until January 2017, says the Daily Express. The Electoral College members meet to vote on 19 December and their result will be announced on 6 January. Barack Obama's replacement will take office on 20 January, alongside her – or his – vice president.

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