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Voting & Elections Toolkits

Voter Registration in Missouri

Eligibility

  • Age: 17 ½ years of age to register, 18 years of age to vote
  • Citizenship: Must be a U.S. citizen
  • Residence: Must be a resident of Missouri
  • Must be registered to vote in the jurisdiction of the person's permanent address prior to the election
  • College students: May register to vote using the permanent address of their “home.” In practice, this may be the address of the residence of the parent(s) of the student, residence hall, apartment in the community where the student attends classes, etc.
  • Check registration status: https://s1.sos.mo.gov/elections/voterlookup/
  • Not currently in prison
  • Not currently on probation or parole after conviction of a felony
  • Not convicted of a felony or misdemeanor connected to voting (unless pardoned by the governor)
  • Not declared incapacitated

More info: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/goVoteMissouri/votereg

Deadline

  • Voter registration deadlines are determined “by the Election Day deadline, or the normal close of business of any public building where registration is allowed, whichever is later, on the fourth Wednesday prior to the election. If registering by mail, [the] registration must be postmarked on the fourth Wednesday prior to the election. If you register after such time, you will be registered to vote in subsequent elections.”
  • Election Calendar for 2020: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/calendar/2020cal

Online registration

Online registration form: https://s1.sos.mo.gov/votemissouri/request

Mail-in registration

Printable form: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/goVoteMissouri/print
Voter Registration Applications must be postmarked by the Election Day deadline

Missouri law does not require an individual to register by political party

If a voter chooses to participate in the August Primary in even-numbered years, the voter will be asked by the Election Judges which party ballot the voter wishes to vote. No record is kept of the voter's selection by the County Clerk's Office.

Updating registration      

Missouri law requires that a voter cast a ballot based on one’s current address and current name. To update a registration after such changes: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/goVoteMissouri/votereg#1_3

Cancelling registration

If you move to a different county or state, you must re-register with your new county and/or state to vote. Notify the county clerk in the Missouri county where you registered to vote if you move out of state: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/goVoteMissouri/localelectionauthority

Note: St. Louis City and St. Louis County are not the same office and they each have separate mailing addresses.

 

ID Requirements for Missouri Voters

ID Requirements for Registration

There are no ID requirements for when you register to vote in Missouri.

 

ID Requirements for Voting

Effective June 1, 2017, the following forms of identification are acceptable for voting purposes in Missouri:

Option 1:

  • Nonexpired Missouri driver license
  • Nonexpired or nonexpiring Missouri non-driver license
  • Nonexpired document which contains the voter's name and photograph and is issued by the United States or the state of Missouri, or
  • Nonexpired or nonexpiring military ID card which contains a photograph

Option 2:

  • Identification issued by the state of Missouri, an agency of the state, or a local election authority of the state
  • Identification issued by the United States government or agency thereof
  • Identification issued by an institution of higher education, including a university, college, vocational and technical school, located within the state of Missouri, or
  • A copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check or other government document that contains the name and address of the voter

Option 3:

If you do not possess any of these forms of identification, but are a registered voter, you may still cast a provisional ballot. Your provisional ballot will be counted if you return to the polling place and show an Option 1 ID or if the signature on the provisional ballot envelope matches the signature on your voter registration record.

 

Where to get an ID

Documents needed to get a Missouri Driver/Non-Driver License: https://dor.mo.gov/drivers/idrequirements.php

Casting a Ballot in Missouri

Important Dates

Election Day is November 3, 2020

2020 Election Calendar: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/calendar/2020cal

2021 Election Calendar: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/calendar/2021cal

Absentee voting

Registered Missourians who expect to be prevented from going to their polling place on Election Day may vote absentee beginning six weeks prior to an election

Absentee voters must provide one of the following reasons for voting absentee:

  • Absence on Election Day from the jurisdiction of the election authority in which such voter is registered to vote
  • Incapacity or confinement due to illness or physical disability, including a person who is primarily responsible for the physical care of a person who is incapacitated or confined due to illness or disability
  • Religious belief or practice
  • Employment as an election authority, as a member of an election authority, or by an election authority at a location other than such voter's polling place
  • Incarceration, provided all qualifications for voting are retained
  • Certified participation in the address confidentiality program established under sections 589.660 to 589.681 because of safety concerns

Voters can request absentee ballots from their local election authority in person, by mail, by fax or by e-mail. Relatives within the second degree (spouse, parents and children) may complete an absentee ballot application, in person, on behalf of the voter who wishes to vote absentee.

Mail in or faxed absentee ballot requests must be received by the election authority no later than the 5:00 p.m. on the second Wednesday prior to any election. Voters can vote by absentee in the office of the local election authority until 5:00 p.m. the night before the election.

Voters requesting an absentee ballot by mail who have registered by mail and have not voted in person are required to submit a copy of their personal identification unless they provided a copy with their registration application. 

Military and overseas voters

Who is eligible?

  • Missouri voters that are part of the United States Uniformed Services, National Guard, Federal Service, their spouse or dependent; any active military member, whether stationed in the United States or overseas can use the Military and Overseas Voting Access Portal.
  • Missouri voter currently overseas

Registering to vote

If you are not registered to vote and are in the military or currently overseas, you can register and request your absentee ballot at the same time by:

Missed the registration deadline?

Even if you miss the registration deadline, state and federal law allow active members of the armed forces and their dependents to vote for federal offices only. You can access a ballot at the Military and Overseas Voting Access Portal or fill out the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB) and mail it to your local election authority

Requesting a ballot

Absentee ballots are available 46 days before an election. Relatives within the second degree may complete an absentee ballot application, in person at the office of your local election authority, for the eligible voter wishing to vote absentee. You can request your absentee ballot by:

Returning your ballot

You can view your absentee ballot through Missouri’s Military and Overseas Voting Access Portal. Voters using the Federal Post Card Application mark their method of receiving their ballot on the application.  You can return your ballot by:

  • MAIL - Most voters are required to return their ballot and accompanying absentee affidavit by mail; postage is not required if you are mailing your ballot from an APO/FPO mail facility, U.S. embassy or consulate, or U.S. post office. You must use the prepaid return envelope template to receive free postage.
  • MAIL, FAX, EMAIL or through the Military and Overseas Voting Access Portal (beginning with the November 2014 General Election) - If you are serving in a hostile zone such as Iraq, Afghanistan, or Kosovo, you may return your voted ballot and accompanying absentee affidavit using one of these methods.

Absentee ballots must be received by your local election authority no later than 12:00 p.m. CST on the Friday following the election.

Polling places and hours

Polling location information is provided and updated by local election authorities. It is recommended you confirm your polling place with your county clerk or board of election. Contact information for your local election authority:  https://voteroutreach.sos.mo.gov/prd/VoterOutreach/VOSearch.aspx

Polling places open at 6:00 a.m. and remain open until 7:00 p.m. Those individuals arriving after the polling place has closed will not be allowed to vote. However, those individuals in line at 7:00 p.m. will be allowed to vote.

Rides to the polls

Many organizations offer free rides to polling places. Some of these include:

  • Lyft (www.lyft.com) provides free or discounted rides in some underserved communities

Help for disabled voters

Curbside Voting: Voters with limited mobility can vote "curbside" or outside the polling place. Just go to your polling place and ask someone to go in and ask poll workers to bring a ballot out to you. They should bring you a ballot within a reasonable period of time.

Accessible Polling Places: If you have physical disabilities, and your polling place is not accessible, you may request a different polling place assignment so that you may vote in a more accessible polling place. You may also vote at a central location. Simply contact your local election authority to make this request. You can find your local election authority here or by calling (800) NOW-VOTE.

Accessible Voting Systems: Every polling place must have an accessible voting system for individuals with disabilities including audiovisual accessibility. Accessible systems include an audio ballot to make your selections or the ability to enlarge text so that you can read the on-screen ballot with ease.

Permanent Absentee Voting: If you have a permanent physical disability, you may request to be placed on a designated list so that your local election authority can automatically mail an absentee ballot application directly to you prior to each election. You will need to make this request directly to your local election authority who will send you further information.

Ballots

Sample ballots

You may be able to view your sample ballot at the Secretary of State’s Voter Information Lookup

Sample ballots can also be viewed at the polling place or at the office of your local election authority. Sample ballots are also required to be printed twice prior to each election in newspapers of general circulation. Some election jurisdictions may also mail sample ballots to all registered voters in that jurisdiction

The 2020 Presidential Primary in Missouri:

https://www.sos.mo.gov/CMSImages/ElectionCandidates/2020FilingDocuments/PPP/2020PresidentialPreferencePrimaryQandA.pdf

What will be on the ballot on Election Day?

You may view statewide ballot measures online

You may view federal/state candidates online

Elections

Primaries vs. general elections

In Missouri, voters do not register with a political party. Individuals voting in the Primary Election may select a party ballot of their choice (Section 115.121.2, RSMo.). Voters who do not wish to select a party ballot in a primary may request a ballot containing other issues, if their jurisdiction’s ballot contains issues.

The 5 established political parties in Missouri are: Republican, Democratic, Libertarian, Constitution, and Green.

Who are the candidates, and what else is on the ballot?

You may view statewide ballot measures online

You may view federal/state candidates online

 

Important Dates

Election Day is November 3, 2020

2020 Election Calendar: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/calendar/2020cal

2021 Election Calendar: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/calendar/2021cal

 

Who conducts elections?

The Elections Division of the Office of the Secretary of State (SOS) is responsible for administering all statewide elections, circulating initiative petitions, and making known the rules governing elections and electronic voting systems.

 

Voter Bill of Rights

 

Where to go with complaints about candidates or how elections are conducted

Any person may file a complaint with the Missouri Secretary of State Elections Division: https://www.sos.mo.gov/elections/elections_integrity

The Secretary of State’s Elections Integrity Unit will evaluate each complaint received and all complaints will receive a written response.

Missouri Elections Law is contained in Chapter 115 of the Missouri Revised Statutes.

For potential violations of the Title III of the Help America Vote Act of 2002, please use the HAVA Complaint Form. Mail this completed and notarized form to:

Elections Integrity, 600 W. Main St., Jefferson City, MO, 65102.

Campaign finance

The Missouri Ethics Commission makes transparency and public information a priority in their operations. The Commission’s website provides detailed financial information about campaign expenditures and contributions and includes many publications, brochures, and web tutorials explaining Missouri’s ethics laws, requirements and regulations.

https://mec.mo.gov/MEC/Campaign_Finance/CFSearch.aspx

How to contact your elected officials:

To find your elected officials: https://www.mo.gov/government/elected-officials/

Guide to Missouri government: https://www.mo.gov/government/guide-to-missouris-government/

 

General Resources on Voting and Elections

General Resources on Voting and Elections


Hotlines


1-866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683)

1-888-VE-Y-VOTA (en Español)

1-888-API-VOTE (Asian multilingual assistance)


Voter Registration & Election Day Resources

Find useful voter information including:

  • Local Election Office and Contact Information
  • Address, Telephone and Email for Local Election Offices
  • Upcoming Federal Election Dates and Deadlines
  • Upcoming State Election Dates and Deadlines
  • Eligibility Requirements
  • Identification Requirements
  • Voter Materials Transmission Options
  • State Lookup Tools – Am I Registered? Where’s my Ballot?

Population-Specific information and Resources

Voting Rights: Laws, Cases, Policy

Voter Engagement

Voter Education

Campaign Finance/Funding Information

Primary Sources, Lesson Plans & Exhibits

Disclaimer

Librarians from the Government Documents Round Table (GODORT), a Round Table of the American Library Association (ALA), created these reference guides. These guides are intended for informational purposes only and are not in any way intended to be legal advice.

These guides are designated with a Creative Commons license and re-use and modification for educational purposes is encouraged.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.