How to Vote

2020 US General Election

Election day is Tuesday, November 3, 2020. Michigan allows any voter to request a ballot by mail. You can also vote in person. Michigan offers early voting.

The process is relatively easy:

  1. CHECK REGISTRATION STATUS

  2. REGISTER (IF NEEDED)

  3. VOTE ON ELECTION DAY

or

  1. CHECK REGISTRATION STATUS

  2. REGISTER (IF NEEDED)

  3. REQUEST MAIL-IN BALLOT

  4. VOTE AT HOME

  5. RETURN BALLOT

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VOTE BY MAIL

  1. Request your mail-in ballot with a mail ballot application.

  2. Fill out the application completely.

  3. Submit the request to your local election office. You should request your ballot as far in advance of the election as possible. The deadline to request a ballot by mail is (received by) Friday, October 30, 2020. Your request must be received by 5 p.m. the Friday before the election (October 30, 2020).

  4. When your ballot arrives, read it carefully and follow the instructions to complete it and return it. You can mail it with one stamp, drop it off at your clerk's office or any drop-box in your district found on this data base.​​​​ It must be at your clerk's office or in a dropbox by 8 p.m. on election night. 

WHO CAN VOTE

You should register to vote before election day in Michigan, but may do at your clerk's office on Election Day. You can find the deadline to register to vote in the "Dates and deadlines" section.

To register in Michigan you must:

  • be a citizen of the United States

  • be 18 years old by the next election

  • be a resident of Michigan and at least a 30 day resident of your city or township by election day

  • not be confined in a jail or prison after being convicted and sentenced

  • *find more information on voting rights restoration here.

VOTE IN PERSON

Vote on Election Day

Voters registered in Michigan can look up where to vote on Michigan's site.

Vote early

Michigan voters can also vote before Election Day through a process called absentee in-person voting. The period for absentee in-person voting runs from Monday, September 21, 2020 to Monday, November 2, 2020, but dates and hours may vary based on where you live.

What to bring

  • You will be asked to show current photo ID to vote in Michigan. Acceptable forms include: Michigan driver's license or state ID card; current (non-expired) driver's license or personal ID card issued by another state; federal or state government-issued photo ID; US passport; military ID card with a photo; tribal ID card with a photo; or a student ID with a photo from a high school or an accredited institution of higher education.

  • Voters without ID: If you are unable to provide ID, you can vote like any other voter by signing an affidavit.

MILITARY AND OVERSEAS 

Active-duty military, their families, and overseas citizens can register to vote and request their absentee ballot using the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA). To do so:

  1. Fill out the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA), or download a copy. Your election official may have questions, so please provide an email address or phone number where they can reach you.

  2. Send the application to your election official.

  3. It is never too early to submit an FPCA! Please do so as soon as possible. You can look up recommended mailing dates by country and region.

  4. Please fill out and send back your ballot as soon as you receive it. Following are recommended return dates to make sure your ballot arrives at your election office on time:

    • 35 days before election - On a ship at sea: September 28, 2020

    • 30 days before election - Outside of the US: October 2, 2020

    • 11 days before the election - Stateside: October 23, 2020

  5. States begin mailing absentee ballots at least 45 days before Election Day. If you haven't received your ballot by 30 days before Election Day, contact your local election office.

If after submitting your FPCA, your ballot does not arrive, contact your election official first. Then:

  • You can still vote using the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB). Print, sign, and mail your FWAB to your local election office.

  • If you mail a FWAB and then receive your regular absentee ballot, you should complete and mail your absentee ballot also. Election officials will ensure that only one ballot is counted.

The Federal Voting Assistance Program – FVAP.gov offers additional information on military and overseas voting in Michigan. You can also call 1-800-438-VOTE or email vote@fvap.gov

CHECK YOUR VOTER REGISTRATION STATUS

You can look up your voter registration record and verify that your information is correct using Michigan's voter registration lookup tool.

HOW TO REGISTER

Michigan offers online voter registration. You can register by mail to vote in Michigan by printing a voter registration form, filling it out, and mailing it to your local election office. You can also register to vote in person if you prefer.

ONLINE REGISTRATION

  • Michigan offers online voter registration.

  • You should know: you need a Michigan ID to use Michigan's online voter registration system. If you don't have a Michigan-issued ID, you can still register by mail to vote.

  • You can register online to vote until Monday, October 19, 2020.

BY-MAIL REGISTRATION

Use the Michigan voter registration form

You can also register to vote using the Michigan voter registration form. Be sure to read the instructions carefully and fill it out completely. Send the completed form to your local election official. To register by mail, the form must be postmarked by Monday, October 19, 2020.

Use the National Voter Registration Form

  1. Print and fill out the National Voter Registration Form.

  2. Box 6 - ID Number: Your completed voter registration form must contain your Michigan driver's license number or Michigan-issued personal identification card number. If you do not have a driver's license or state issued personal identification card, you must include the last four digits of your social security number. If you do not have a driver's license or a state issued personal identification card or a social security number, please write "NONE" on the form. A unique identifying number will be assigned by the State.

  3. Box 7 - Choice of Party: Michigan does NOT require that you register with a party to participate in partisan primary elections.

  4. Box 8 - Race or Ethnic Group: Leave blank. This information is not required.

  5. Review the "Who can vote?" section above and check that you're eligible.

  6. Sign the form.

  7. Send the completed form to your local election official. To register by mail, the form must be postmarked by Monday, October 19, 2020.

  8. Notice: Michigan law requires that the same address be used for voter registration and driver's license purposes. Therefore, if the residence address you provide on this form differs from the address shown on a driver's license or personal identification card issued by the State of Michigan, the Secretary of State will automatically change your driver's license or personal identification card address to match the residence address entered on this form. If an address change is made, the Secretary of State will mail you an address update sticker for your license or personal identification card.

  9. If you are registering to vote for the first time in your jurisdiction and are mailing this registration application, Federal law requires you to show proof of identification the first time you vote. Proof of identification includes: A current and valid photo identification or A current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck or government document that shows your name and address. More information here.

DATES AND DEADLINES

  • Election day is Tuesday, November 3, 2020.

  • The deadline to register online to vote is Monday, October 19, 2020.

  • The deadline for registering by mail to vote is (postmarked by) Monday, October 19, 2020.

  • The deadline to register in person to vote is Tuesday, November 3, 2020.

  • The deadline to request a ballot by mail is (received by) Friday, October 30, 2020. Your request must be received by 5 p.m. the Friday before the election (October 30, 2020).

  • The early voting period runs from Monday, September 21, 2020 to Monday, November 2, 2020, but dates and hours may vary based on where you live.

  • Michigan does offer registration on Election Day at designated locations in each town. It is not available at your polling place.

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