Thanks to the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (or what is also known as The Motor Voter Act), you can register to vote at most Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) offices. This may be the lone DMV service with in which the requirements are pretty much the same throughout the country.
Voting Eligibility Requirements
Before registering to vote, you must meet the following requirements:
- You must be a United States citizen.
- You must be a permanent resident of the state in which you’re registering in. Some states apply specific timeframes to residency. Minnesota, for instance, mandates voters establish residency at least 20 days preceding the primary or general election. Pennsylvania requires 30 days.
- You must be at least 18 years old.
- You cannot be disqualified from voting due to a court order.
- You cannot be registered to vote in a different state.
- If you were ever convicted of a felony, your right to vote must have been legally restored. In some states, this means completing your sentence, including probation or parole; on others, it means petitioning the court.
Register to Vote at DMV Before Elections
If you’re eligible to vote, visit your local DMV location with a completed voter registration application. You can download this form from your state’s Board of Election’s website, or obtain from a large number of locations including libraries, government offices and, of course, at any DMV office.
In most cases, you will need either your driver’s license number or state ID card number. Or, if you have neither, be prepared to enter at least the last four digits of your Social Security number.
Do not provide false information when completing your voter application. If caught, you’ll be charged with a felony, with possible jail time of up to five years.
To be eligible to vote, you will need to submit your voter application prior to your state’s registration deadline date. This varies by state. Virginia, for example, shuts downs voting registration 22 days before a general election, New Jersey 21 days, and North Carolina 25 days.
Keep in mind that your DMV office is only one of many places you can register to vote. Some of these other locations include:
- Your County Voter Registration Office.
- Armed Forces Recruitment Centers.
- Government offices that provide services for the handicapped.
Do you have any voter registration information we missed or that you’d like to share with our online community? Leave your wisdom below in our comments section.