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Voting & Elections Toolkits

Voting and advocacy resources by librarians for librarians

Voter Registration in New York

Eligibility to Register to Vote

Unsure if you are already registered to vote, please check here.

  • For more information, please visit the official New York website.

Deadline

In person

You can register in person at your county board of elections, at any New York State Agency-Based voter registration center, or at the Department of Motor Vehicles.

New York State Voter Registration Form

  • You may register to vote using the New York State Voter Registration Form accessible at the links below. You can complete a PDF version of the New York State Voter Registration Form on-line by clicking on the link below, typing the necessary information and selecting the appropriate boxes. Alternatively, you can print the form to complete by hand.
  • You can also complete an Accessible version of the New York State Voter Registration Form on-line by clicking on the link below, typing the necessary information and selecting the appropriate boxes.

Online registration

  • You may also submit your voter application form at the Department of Motor Vehicles, either in person or on their web site if you already have DMV-issued identification.

Victims of Domestic Violence

N.Y. Election Law (5-508) allows victims of domestic violence to apply for a confidential registration by delivering a sworn statement to their local county Board of Elections stating they are a victim of domestic violence and they wish to have their voter registration record kept confidential because of the threat of physical or emotional harm to themselves or a family or household member. Their voter registration record will be kept separate and apart from other registration records for four years and not be made available for inspection or copying by the public or any other person, except election officials acting within the course and scope of their official duties. Under a separate section of the law (11-306), they can also be excused from going to their polling place to vote and get a special ballot. For further information, please contact your local board of elections for their confidential registration and special ballot procedures.

New York State Statement of Confidential Voter (pdf pdf 138KB)

 

            

Updating registration      

To update registration after a move, name change, or change of political party affiliation, use the voter registration form: English and Spanish

ID Requirements for New York Voters

ID Requirements for Registration

A New York State driver license, permit, or non-driver ID card and social secrutiy number is required.

If you do not have a DMV or social security number, you may use a valid photo ID, a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check or some other government document that shows your name and address. 

  •  

ID Requirements for Voting

If the County Board of Elections is unable to verify your identity when you register, you will be asked for ID when you vote for the first time. Otherwise, you will not need to bring any ID to the polls.

First time voters must provide identification either on or with their voter registration application. If you have not provided ID by Election Day, you are still allowed to vote by affidavit ballot, but not using the poll site scanner.  Acceptable ID includes entering one of the following on your Voter Registration Application:

  • Driver's license number

  • Non-driver's ID number

  • Last four digits of your social security number

If you do not provide your driver's license number or the last four digits of your social security number on your registration form, you can include a copy of any of the following documentation with your registration application:

  • Current and Valid Photo ID

  • Current Utility Bill

  • Bank Statement

  • Government Check or Paycheck

  • Government Document that shows Name and Address

Where to get an ID

Department of Motor Vehicles

Obtaining an ID

Casting a Ballot in New York

Important Dates

FOR GENERAL ELECTION

Date Deadline Information
October 24 Last day for board of elections to receive absentee ballot application by letter, telefax, or through the absentee request portal.
November 7 Last day to apply IN-PERSON for absentee ballot.
November 8 Last day to postmark ballot. Must be received by the local board of elections no later than Nov. 15th. Military Voter Ballots must be received no later than Nov. 21st.
November 8 Last day to deliver ballot IN-PERSON to the local board of elections or to any poll site in your county.

2022 Voting by Absentee Ballot Deadlines

Date Deadline Information
October 24 Last day for board of elections to receive absentee ballot application by letter, telefax, or through the absentee request portal.
November 7 Last day to apply IN-PERSON for absentee ballot.
November 8 Last day to postmark ballot. Must be received by the local board of elections no later than Nov. 15th. Military Voter Ballots must be received no later than Nov. 21st.
November 8 Last day to deliver ballot IN-PERSON to the local board of elections or to any poll site in your county.

 

Absentee voting

Who is eligible to use an absentee ballot?

In order to apply for and receive an absentee ballot, you must meet one of the following requirements:

  • Absent from your county or, if a resident of New York City absent from said city, on Election Day.

  • Unable to appear at the polls due to temporary or permanent illness or disability; or because you are the primary care giver of one or more individuals who are ill or physically disabled.
  • A resident or patient of a Veterans Health Administration Hospital.
  • Detained in jail awaiting Grand Jury action or confined in prison after conviction for an offense other than a felony.

Applications for Absentee Ballots are available at your county board of elections.

You may also download a PDF version of the New York State Absentee Ballot Application Form

More info regarding Absentee Voting.

 

Polling places and hours

  • Use the Polling Place Locator to find your polling place.
  • Primary Elections
    • In New York City and the counties of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Putnam, Dutchess and Erie, POLLS OPEN AT 6 AM - CLOSE AT 9 PM. In all other counties, POLLS OPEN AT 12 NOON and CLOSE AT 9 PM.

  • General Elections

    • Polls are open from 6 am - 9 pm.

Rides to the polls

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

  • Lyft provides free or discounted rides in some underserved communities  Lyft is offering 50% off up to $10 in ride credits to help people in need get to the polls. Enter code VOTE22 in the Lyft app. Offer available on November 8, 2022 only
  • Political parties sometimes arrange rides for voters. Contact the local office:

Help for voters with disabilities

  • The New York State Board of Elections is committed to providing exemplary assistance to all voters, including those with access needs. Any voter who requests assistance is entitled to receive it, regardless of the reason.

  • In addition to poll worker training, we also strive to serve all voters by creating accessible polling places.

  • The New York State Board of Elections has also made registering to vote accessible to all voters by offering multiple methods for completing a Voter Registration Form on their Voter Registration page.

More info regarding Voter Access Needs.

Ballots

NYC Voters' Guide - nonpartisan guide to candidates and referenda on the ballot.

Elections

Primaries vs. general elections

  • Primary elections are conducted to select each party’s candidates in the general election.
  • In New York, a voter must be a registered member of a political party in order to vote in that party’s primary.
  • In a general election, voters are not required to have a party affiliation.

Jurisdiction

Offices/Measures That May Appear on the Ballot

Federal (even years)

President/Vice-President (elected every four years; next election in 2020)

Senator (elected every six years for staggered terms; next election in 2022)

Representative (elected every two years)

State (even years)

Governor/Lieutenant Governor, State Comptroller, Attorney General (elected every four years; next election in 2022)

State Senator (elected every two years)

Assembly Member (elected every two years)

Statewide ballot measures

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

  • The New York City Campaign Finance Board produces the nonpartisan NYC Voter Guide, which provides profiles submitted by each candidate and information about state and local ballot proposals.

Important Dates

November 8 General Election Day 

Oct 24 Last day for board of elections to receive absentee ballot application by letter, telefax, or through the absentee request portal.

Nov 7 Last day to apply IN-PERSON for absentee ballot.

Nov 8 Last day to postmark ballot. Must be received by the local board of elections no later than Nov. 15th. Military Voter Ballots must be received no later than Nov. 21st.  Also last day to deliver ballot IN-PERSON to the local board of elections or to any poll site in your county

Who conducts elections?

  • New York's State Board of Elections was established in the Executive Department June 1, 1974 as a bipartisan agency vested with the responsibility for administration and enforcement of all laws relating to elections in New York State

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

If you wish to file a complaint or inquire about enforcement action you may contact the Enforcement Counsel at:

Chief Enforcement Counsel
Division of Election Law Enforcement
NYS Board of Elections
40 North Pearl Street
Albany, NY 12207
518-486-7858
enforcement@elections.ny.gov.

Campaign finance

New York State's Board of Elections maintains a Campaign Finance portal that provides info on campaign finance news & laws for candidates & committees for New York State.

How to contact your elected officials:

Find your elected officials.

General Resources on Voting and Elections

General Resources on Voting and Elections


Election Protection Hotlines


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

1-888-VE-Y-VOTA (888-839-8682) (en Español)

1-888-API-VOTE (888-274-8683) (Asian multilingual assistance)

1-844-YALLA-US (844-925-5287) (Arabic)


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.

If you have questions or feedback to share about these guides, we encourage you to CONTACT US.

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.