Registration Deadline: In Pennsylvania, the deadline to register to vote is 30 days prior to each election. Applications received after that date will be processed for the next primary, special, municipal or general election.
- You must be registered and enrolled in a political party to vote in that party's primary.
- All registered voters are entitled to vote on Constitutional amendments, ballot questions and in all special elections that might be held at the same time as a primary election. You can change your political party at any time. When the change gets made in the system depends on when you make the change.
-Changes made more than 30 days before an election will take effect for that election.
-Changes made 30 days or less before an election will take effect for the next election.
VOTER REGISTRATION QUALIFICATIONS
Age: At least 18 years of age on or before the day of the next primary, special, municipal, or general election.
Citizenship: Must be a United States citizen for at least one month before the next primary, special, municipal, or general election.
Residency: Must be a resident of Pennsylvania and the election district in which you want to register and vote for at least 30 days before the next primary, special, municipal, or general election.
Felony Convictions: Voting rights restored automatically after release from prison. Learn more about convicted felons voting information.
ID Requirements: To register you must provide a Pennsylvania driver's license number, PennDOT ID card number, or the last four digits of your social security number.
When voting at a polling place for the first time, you must show proof of identification, either with photo or not.
Approved forms of photo identification include:
-Pennsylvania driver’s license or PennDOT ID card
-ID issued by any Commonwealth agency
-ID issued by the U.S. Government
-U.S. Armed Forces ID
Approved forms of non- photo identification that includes your name and
-Confirmation issued by the County Voter Registration Office
-Non-photo ID issued by the Commonwealth
-Non-photo ID issued by the U.S. Government
-Current utility bill
-Current bank statement
OBTAINING A VOTER REGISTRATION FORM
In person: You can register to vote at a County Voter Registration Office or other designated sites:
-State offices that provide public assistance and services to persons with disabilities
-Armed Forces Recruitment Centers
-County Clerk of Orphans' Court offices, including each Marriage License Bureau
-Area Agencies on Aging
-Centers for Independent Living
-County Mental Health and Mental Retardation offices
-Student disability services offices of the State System of Higher Education
-Offices of Special Education
-DA Complementary Paratransit offices
-Any agency using the Compass application
You can also register to vote at any PennDOT or driver’s license center when you obtain or update your driver's license.
By mail/ in writing: You can register to vote by mail in two ways:
- Download the Pennsylvania Voter Registration Application. Print it, then fill it in, sign it and send it to your county voter registration office.
- Complete, sign and deliver to your county elections office by mail or in person.
Other Voter Registration Application Information: Once you have registered to vote, you are not required to register again unless you change your residence, name, or political party affiliation.
VERIFYING YOUR VOTER REGISTRATION STATUS
Phone: You can also confirm your registration by contacting your county elections office or by calling 1-877-VOTESPA.
ABSENTEE BALLOT QUALIFICATIONS
Who can vote absentee:
The following people may vote for any office in any election by absentee ballot as long as they are registered to vote:
-A person with an illness or physical disability who is unable to go to the polling place or to operate a voting machine and obtain assistance by distinct and audible statements. (Note: A voter with a disability may have permanent absentee voter status.)
-A person who will not go to a polling place on Election Day because of the observance of a religious holiday.
-A spouse or dependent residing with or accompanying a person in the military service of the United States.
-A member of the Merchant Marine and their spouse and dependents residing with or accompanying them.
-A member of a religious or welfare group attached to and serving with the armed forces and their spouse and dependents residing with or accompanying them.
-A spouse or dependent accompanying a person employed by the Commonwealth or the federal government, whose duties, occupation or business on Election Day require them to be away from the Commonwealth or their municipality of residence.
-An individual, and their spouse and dependents residing with or accompanying them, with duties, occupation or business (including leaves of absence for teaching, vacations and sabbatical leaves) away from their official residence on Election Day.
-A county employee who expects that their Election Day duties relating to the conduct of the election will prevent them from voting
Those who may be able to vote with an absentee ballot even if you did not register to vote before an election include:
-A person who is or may be in the military service of the United States. They can be in Pennsylvania on Election Day or not. Voters in the military do not have to register before Election Day.
-A qualified war veteran who is bedridden or hospitalized due to illness or physical disability if they are absent from the municipality where they live and unable to attend his/her polling place because of such illness or disability.
OBTAINING AN ABSENTEE BALLOT
In person: Obtain and complete an application for an absentee ballot at your local county elections office.
The County Board of Elections must receive your application for absentee ballot no later than 5:00 p.m. on the Tuesday before the election.
Military and overseas voting:
Military and overseas voters may request an absentee ballot in several ways:
-Use any official absentee ballot application form to request an absentee ballot.
-Request that the state e-mail an absentee ballot application to your email. Send an email from the account where you want to receive the email to email@example.com.
-Request that the state mail you a paper absentee ballot application. Send an e-mail to ST-UOCAVAQues@pa.gov.
-Members of the military may send in a Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot form to your County Election Office. The United States Department of Defense distributes this form as Federal Form 186.
Only you or an adult member of your immediate family may submit your application for an absentee ballot.
Learn more about voting as a military or overseas voter here.
Emergency Voting: Emergency Absentee Ballot Applications are available at the county Board of Elections Office.
To get an Emergency Absentee Ballot, you must give your information to the Court of Common Pleas in the county where you registered to vote.
For emergencies that occur between 5:00 P.M. Tuesday and 5:00 P.M. Friday before the Election, you may download and apply for this Emergency Absentee Ballot. This application must be notarized before it is submitted.
For emergencies that occur after 5:00 pm the Friday before the election you may download and apply for this Emergency Absentee Ballot.
The deadline to submit your last-minute Emergency Absentee Ballot application is no later than 8pm on Election Day.
Click here to learn more about emergency voting.
Other absentee ballot information: If you would like to designate another person to assist you in delivering a completed absentee or alternative ballot, print, complete and return the following form to the County Board of Elections:
-Certification of Authorized Representative Form
SUBMITTING AN ABSENTEE BALLOT
Location and time:
-For most elections, the deadline to return your absentee ballot is 5pm on the Friday before Election Day.
-For presidential elections, ballots received by 8pm on Election Day will be counted for the offices of president and vice president.
-Military and overseas voters must postmark their ballot by 11:59 pm the day before Election Day. The ballot must arrive no later than one week after Election Day.
Early voting qualifications: Early voting is unavailable, however, select voters may use absentee voting to vote before election day.
Deciding how to vote: https://votesmart.org
Polling Place: Polling place locator
How to Vote: Voting system demonstrations
Getting your vote counted: Know your voter rights.
Problems with voting: HAVA complaint procedures or contact the County Board of Elections
Verifying provisional ballot status: Search for your provisional ballot status.
Verifying absentee ballot status: login to the SURE Public portal and click the Absentee Ballot Status link.
College Students: voting as a college student
Top 5 Things Every Pennsylvania Voter Should Know