District of Columbia Voter Registration Information



Registration Deadline: Your voter registration completed at a voter registration agency or mailed application must be postmarked by the 30th day prior to an election for you to be eligible to cast a ballot; after that date, you can only register to vote in person. There is no registration deadline in person, you may register and cast a special ballot on election day. 

Party Affiliation: To vote in a primary election in the District of Columbia, you must be registered to vote with the Democratic, Republican or D.C. Statehood Green Parties.
After the 30th day before a primary election, you may not change your party affiliation. Requests for change of party affiliation received during the thirty days before a primary election will be processed after the primary election.


Age: Must be at least 17 years old, and turn 18 years old on or before the date of the next general election. Additionally, a person who otherwise meets these qualifications may pre-register on or after his or her 16
th birthday; however, he or she she may not vote until all other requirements are met.

Citizenship: Must be a United States citizen

Residency: Must have maintained a residence in the District for at least 30 days before the date of the election and not claim the right to vote in any other state or territory.

Mental Competency: Must not be adjudged legally incompetent to vote

Felony Convictions: Must not be incarcerated for a crime that is a felony in the District

ID Requirements: Registered voters do not have to show ID to vote. If you are a first-time voter who registered by mail and did not provide identification when registering, you may need to show identification in order to cast a regular ballot. Voters registering during the early voting period or at the polls on Election Day will need to provide proof of residence in order to register and vote. The following are examples of acceptable forms of identification and proof of residency (must include the name and address of the voter):

   -A copy of a current and valid government photo identification;
   -A copy of a current utility bill (not including cell phone bills);
   -A current bank statement;
   -A current government check;
   -A paycheck;
   -Another government document that shows the name and address of the voter.


Online: District of Columbia voter registration online application

In person: You can register at one of the following locations:
   -District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics;
   -Department of Motor Vehicles
   -Department of Corrections;
   -Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services;
   -Office of Aging;
   -Department of Parks and Recreation; or
   -Department of Human Services

By mail/ in writing: Mail-in voter registration application download

By fax: Contact the board of elections and ethics for faxing options.


Online: Registration status verification

Phone: If no voter registration card is received within three weeks of mailing this application, call (202) 727-2525 or contact District of Columbia Board of Elections.


Who can vote absentee: Any registered voter may vote absentee without providing an excuse.


Online: Online absentee ballot application form or print a form.

By mail: Print a form and mail the completed form to the board of elections and ethics office.

Military and overseas voting: Qualified overseas or military voters can receive their absentee ballot by electronic delivery by clicking here.

Emergency voting: You can register the day of the election in person. Absentee emergency registration options available for certain voters.

Other absentee ballot information: click here.


Location and time: Absentee ballot applications must be received by the Tuesday before Election Day. Voted absentee ballots must be postmarked by Election Day and received within 10 days of Election Day in order to be counted.


Early voting qualifications: Early voting is offered in DC, without additional registration or qualifications. Check with the DC Board of Elections and Ethics for locations and times for early voting

Other information for early voting: Early voting begins approximately 15 days before an election. It takes place at the board office or satellite locations.


Verifying Registration: Voter registration status verification

Deciding how to vote: http://www.votesmart.org/

Time off to vote: Time off to vote is subject to the employer.
District of Columbia law does not require employers to grant time off to vote for employees.

Polling Place: District of Columbia polling place locator

ID Requirements: Registered voters do not need to present proof of residence to vote, however, some polling places require ID to enter the facility. It is therefore encouraged that you take some form of identification with you to vote.

How to Vote: Voting machines in the District of Columbia

Getting your vote counted: District of Columbia Voters' Bill of Rights

Problems with voting: District of Columbia HAVA plan. Contact the board with specific complaints and problems with voting.

Verifying provisional ballot status: Same day registration provisional ballot status

Verifying absentee ballot status: Verifying Absentee Ballot Status