Register to Vote
Qualifications to Register to Vote
- be a United States citizen;
- be 18 years old by December 31 of the year in which you file this form (note: you must be 18 years old by the date of the general, primary or other election in which you want to vote);
- live at your present address at least 30 days before an election;
- not be in prison or on parole for a felony conviction and;
- not be adjudged mentally incompetent by a court;
- not claim the right to vote elsewhere.
How and Where to register to Vote (Deadlines)
- You can register in person at your county board of elections
- or at any New York State Agency-Based voter registration center.
- You can enter your name directly into our mailing list database to have a New York State Voter Registration Form mailed to you. (NOTE: The same form can be downloaded, using the link below.)
- You can call our 1-800-FOR-VOTE hotline to request a voter application.
- You can download a PDF version of the New York State Voter Registration Form.
- Alternately, 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. However, the file size of these forms are substantially larger than the above forms, so it may take quite a while for them to load on computers with slower Internet connections.
Qualifications to Vote by Absentee Ballot
- 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 patient or inmate in a Veterans’ Administration Hospital.
- Detained in jail awaiting Grand Jury action or confined in prison after conviction for an offense other than a felony.
How to Vote by Absentee Ballot (Deadlines)
- 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
- Upon completion, applications must be mailed to your county board no later than the seventh day before the election or delivered in person no later than the day before the election.
- You may also request an Absentee Ballot by sending a letter to your county board of elections. The letter must be received by your county board no earlier than 30 days and no later than seven days before the election. The letter must contain the following information:
- the address where you are registered
- an address where the ballot is to be sent
- the reason for the request, and
- the signature of the voter
An application form will be mailed with your ballot. The application form must be completed and returned with your ballot.
If you cannot pick up your ballot, or will not be able to receive it through the mail, you have the right to designate someone to pick it up for you. Only that person designated on your application may pick up and deliver your ballot.
If you are permanently ill or disabled, you have the right to receive an Absentee Ballot for each subsequent election without further application. Simply file an application with your county board of elections indicating permanent illness or physical disability. You will then automatically receive an absentee ballot for every election until your registration is canceled.
Military and Overseas (Federal) Voting
- Persons serving in the military, along with their spouses and/or dependents, may register as a military voter in New York, entitling them to receive an absentee ballot for all federal, state and local races that they would be otherwise entitled to vote in if they were to go to their assigned polling place based on their New York residence.
Registering/Applying for a Ballot
- To register as a new military voter and/or to request an absentee ballot, you must complete a Federal Post Card Application and return it to your county board of elections in New York.
- This application will register you (if not already registered) and will also serve as your absentee ballot application for 2 federal general election cycles.
- Always be sure to share any change of address information with your county board of elections.
- Applications are available from your Voting Assistance Officer on base, or you can visit either the Federal Voting Assistance Program Website or theMilitary and Overseas Federal Voting Website for forms and information.
- On this application, you may state a preference as to how you would like to receive your ballot. You can choose mail, fax or email as a preferred method of transmission.
- If you have stated a preference to receive your voting materials by email/online, you will receive an email notification directing you to the State’s online ballot delivery site, https://ny.secureballotusa.com to access your ballot.
- Questions? Call the State Board of Elections at 518-473-5086 or the Federal Voter Assistance Program at 1-800-438-8683, or contact your Voting Assistance Officer or US Embassy office.
*All information listed above is taken directly from the NYS Board of Elections website, found here.