District of Columbia

Upcoming Elections

Oct. 26, 2020 – Voter Registration Deadline – Online/Mail/Email/Fax

For more information, visit the District of Columbia Board of Elections.

Oct. 26, 2020 – Voter Registration in Person

For more information, visit the District of Columbia Board of Elections.

Voting in Washington, D.C.

When You Can Vote

Election Day

On Election Day, polls will be open from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time.

Early Voting

In D.C., voters are permitted to vote early in person.  For the November 3, 2020 General Election, the early voting period is between Tuesday, October 27, 2020 through Monday, November 2, 2020, from 8:30 am – 7:00 pm. Voters can find a list of early voting locations and hours by visiting the DC Board of Elections website.

Where You Can Vote

How to Find Your Polling Place

Voters can determine their proper polling place by checking the D.C. Board of Elections website

Please see this Voter Guide for Locations for the November 3, 2020 General Election.

Registering to Vote

Registration Deadlines

If voters wish to register online, by mail, by email or by fax, voters must submit a voter registration application no later than 21 calendar days before an election in which they intend to vote, i.e. by October 13, 2020 for the November 3, 2020 election. If voters wish to register in person, they must submit a completed application in person no later than the day before the start of the early voting period. Washington, D.C. also has same day registration on Election Day and during Early Voting. 

How to Check Your Registration

Visit https://www.dcboe.org/Voters/Register-To-Vote/Check-Voter-Registration-Status.  You can also call the offices of the D.C. Board of Elections at (202) 727-2525, Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:45 p.m.

Registration Eligibility:  In order to be eligible to vote in D.C., you must:

  • Be a citizen of the United States;
  • Be a resident of the District of Columbia for at least 30 days prior to the election in which you intend to vote;
    • Not claim voting residence outside of D.C.
  • Be at least 18 years old on the date of the General Election; 
  • Not be in jail for a felony conviction; and
  • Not have been found by a court to be legally incompetent to vote.

How to Register

You can register to vote in D.C. online or download, complete and sign the voter registration application or find one at designated locations including the D.C. Board of Elections, public libraries, Metropolitan Police Department precincts, or fire stations.

1. Online 

Submit a completed voter registration form at least 21 days before Election Day.  

If you have a current and valid DC Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)-issued identification (ID) number AND you consent to the use of your digital signature on file at the DMV as your signature for this application you do not have to print/sign the registration application.

If you do not have a DMV-issued ID or you do not consent to the use of your signature on file at the DMV as your signature for your application, you can still complete the voter registration application online, but you must then print and sign the application, and return it to the D.C. Board of Elections: 

  • By mail or in person at

D.C. Board of Elections
1015 Half Street, SE
Suite 750
Washington, DC 20003

2. Mail, Fax, or Email
Submit a completed voter registration form at least 21 days before Election Day to the D.C. Board of Elections:

  • By mail at:

DC Board of Elections

1015 Half Street, SE

Suite 750

Washington, DC 20003

  1. In-Person

Submit a completed application in person no later than the day before the start of the early voting period at the: 

  • DC Board of Elections
  • Department of Motor Vehicles offices
  • Office of Aging
  • Department of Human Services
  • Department of Health
  • Department of Corrections
  • Department of Youth Services
  • Department of Developmental and Rehabilitative Services
  • Department of Health Care Finance
  • Department of Parks and Recreation
  • Department of Disability Services
  • District of Columbia Public Library
  • District of Columbia Public Schools
  • Health Benefit Exchange Agency
  1. Same Day

D.C. offers same-day registration at Early Voting Centers and at the polls on Election Day. Voters wishing to register in-person during early voting or on Election Day must provide acceptable proof of residence showing the voter’s name and current DC address; the acceptable forms of proof are listed below.

Identification Required for Registration:  If you are registering to vote for the first time in D.C. and you submit your application by mail or online, you must either include a copy of one of the following documents with your application or present a copy of the document the first time you vote:

  • A copy of a current and valid government-issued photo identification that shows your name and address
  • A copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, or paycheck that shows your name and address (issued no earlier than 90 days before the date you mail your application or, if you do not submit proof by mail or online, 90 days before the date you vote)
  • Any other government-issued document that shows your name and address.

If you register during the early voting period or at the polls on Election Day, you must provide proof of residence that shows your name and current District of Columbia address. Individuals who fail to present this identification may vote by special (i.e., provisional) ballot.

Acceptable forms of proof of residence include:

  • A copy of a current and valid government-issued photo identification
  • A utility bill for water, gas, electricity, cable, internet, telephone, or cellular phone service issued no earlier than 90 days before the election
  • A savings, checking, credit, or money market account statement from a bank or credit union issued no earlier than 90 days before the election
  • A paycheck, stub, or earning statement that includes the employer’s name, address, and telephone number and was issued no earlier than 90 days before the election
  • A government-issued document or check from a federal or District agency, other than the Board of Elections, issued no earlier than 90 days before the election
  • A current residential lease or rental agreement
  • An occupancy statement from a District homeless shelter issued no earlier than 90 days before the election
  • A tuition or housing bill from a District of Columbia college or university issued for the current academic or housing term
Early Voting & by Absentee Ballot

If You Want to Vote Early 

 For the November 3, 2020 General Election, the early voting period is between Tuesday, October 27, 2020 and Monday, November 2, 2020, from 8:30 am – 7:00 pm.   For a list of EVC locations and times, visit the Early Voting Centers page.

If You Want to Vote Absentee

District voters may vote by absentee ballot for any reason. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the DC Board of Elections has developed the Vote Safe DC campaign. Pursuant to that initiative, the DC Board of Elections is mailing every registered voter a ballot for the November 3rd General Election. Ballots will be sent to the address at which the voter is registered. Voters will not need to request absentee ballots as they would during the normal process. 

If a voter wishes for their ballot to be sent to a location other than the registered address, they may complete the form to request a ballot.  

Your voted and mailed ballot must be postmarked or otherwise demonstrated to have been sent on or before Election Day. Mailed ballots must arrive no later than the 10th day after Election Day. For the November 3, 2020 general election, this is November 13, 2020. Ballots must be placed in a Mail Ballot Drop Box or dropped off in person at a voting center by 8:00pm on Election Day.

You can track your absentee ballot by visiting https://www.dcboe.org/Voters/Absentee-Voting/Track-Absentee-Ballot.

If You Have Moved Within Your State

Voters can update their registration information online or in-person at any agency in D.C. available for registering to vote; for the full list of agencies, visit: Board of Elections website.

If You Are in the Military or are an Overseas Voter

Military and other overseas citizens may use the standard procedure for early voting by mail, but there are also special provisions for members of the U.S. Armed Forces and Merchant Marine, commissioned corps of the Public Health Service and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, along with family members of all these groups, and other U.S. citizens who reside outside the United States.  These individuals are covered by the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA).

Registering and Requesting an Absentee Ballot

UOCAVA voters can use the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) to register to vote and to request an absentee ballot at the same time.  You can submit the FPCA by mail, email or fax. To submit by mail, download and complete the FPCA and mail it to the D.C. Board of Elections.  To submit by email, scan the signed FPCA into your computer.  Be sure to include the Transmission Cover Sheet.  Email this package directly to the D.C. Board of Elections.  If you choose to fax your FPCA to the Board, you also must include the Transmission Cover Sheet. 

To register, the FPCA must be received by the Board by no later than the 21st day before an election.  The FPCA deadline for the November 3, 2020 general election is October 13, 2020.

Visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s (FVAP) District of Columbia page for more information. 

Receiving and casting an Absentee Ballot

UOCAVA voters may receive their absentee ballot by mail, email or fax.  They may submit their completed ballots the same way:  by mail, email, or fax. For more information about receiving and casting an absentee ballot visit the Federal Voter Assistance Program page. 

Email and fax ballots must be received by November 3, 2020 at 8:00 p.m. All mail ballots must be postmarked by November 3, 2020 and received by 8pm on November 13, 2020.

Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot

The Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB) is a back-up ballot that can be used by all UOCAVA voters.  UOCAVA voters use the FWAB to write in their votes when they have not received their absentee ballot in time.  If a UOCAVA voter is not registered, the local election office will treat the information submitted in the FWAB transmission envelope as the voter’s registration application.  FWAB ballots for the November 3, 2020 general election must be received by November 3, 2020, at 8:00 p.m.

If You Have a Criminal Record

Any person incarcerated for a misdemeanor or a felony can vote. The “Comprehensive Policing and Justice Reform Second Emergency Amendment Act of 2020” removes the previous restrictions that prohibited those currently incarcerated for felonies from voting.

Effective immediately, every qualified voter in the Department of Corrections’ care will be provided with a voter registration form and an absentee ballot (without requirement for an application). Beginning on January 1, 2021, this requirement will extend to qualified D.C. voters in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons (rather than the city department of corrections).

Election Protection Materials

Questions about voting in Washington, D.C.?

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