Registration Deadline: The deadline to register to vote in this state is 25 days before the day of the election. Forms that are mailed must be received or postmarked by the deadline.
If you miss the voter registration deadline, you may register and vote during the one-stop
absentee voting period (early voting) for the election. See the section on Early Voting for more information.
Party Affiliation: There are five recognized political parties in North Carolina: Constitution, Democratic, Green, Libertarian and Republican. Voter registration applicants may choose one of these political parties when completing a voter registration application, or they may choose not to register with a political party affiliation.
In this case, the voter’s party affiliation will be designated as Unaffiliated.
North Carolina has a semi-closed primary system.
In a partisan primary, voters who are affiliated with a political party may only vote the partisan ballot for the party for which they are affiliated; they are closed from voting in another party’s primary. Unaffiliated voters may vote in any one recognized party’s primary.
In a General Election, voters may vote for the candidates of their choice, regardless of the candidate's party affiliation.
VOTER REGISTRATION QUALIFICATIONS
Age: Must be at least 18 years old or will be 18 by the next general election
17-year-olds may vote in a primary election if they will be 18 at the time of the general election
Citizenship: Must be a United States citizen
Residency: Must be a resident of your county and must have resided at your residential address for at least 30 days before the election.
Previous Voter Registration: Must rescind any previous registration in another county or state
Felony Convictions: Not be serving a sentence for a felony conviction, including probation, parole, or post-release supervision
Note: By order of the court, you may now register and vote if you are serving an extended term of probation, post-release supervision, or parole, you have outstanding fines, fees, or restitution, and you do not know of another reason that your probation, post-release supervision, or parole was extended.
Once you have completed a felony sentence, including any probation, parole, or post-release supervision, or received a pardon, you are eligible to register and vote. No additional documentation is needed.
If you have been discharged from probation, you are eligible to register and vote, even if you still owe money or have a civil lien.
For more information click here
OBTAINING A VOTER REGISTRATION FORM
-NC State Board of Elections
-Public high schools or college admissions offices.
Further, the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA) requires certain agencies in this state to offer voter registration services when at these locations for agency services. These agencies include are:
-North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles (NC DMV)
-Public Assistance Agencies
-Departments of Social Services (DSS)
-Departments of Public Health (WIC)
-Disability Services Agencies
-Vocational Rehabilitation offices
-Departments of Services for the Blind
-Departments of Services for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing
-Departments of Mental Health Services
-Employment Security Commission (ESC)
By fax/email: Click here to find the fax number and/or email address for your county Board of Elections.
VERIFYING YOUR VOTER REGISTRATION STATUS
Online: voter registration verification
Phone: contact your County Board of Elections
ABSENTEE BALLOT QUALIFICATIONS
Who can vote absentee: Any registered North Carolina voter can request a mail-in absentee ballot from his/her respective county board of elections. No special circumstance or reason is needed to vote by mail in North Carolina.
OBTAINING AN ABSENTEE BALLOT
In person: One-stop absentee voting (in-person absentee voting or early voting) allows registered voters to go in person to their county board of elections or an alternative location to vote an absentee ballot. See Early Voting for more information.
By mail: To receive a mail-in absentee ballot for an election, a voter or the voter's near-relative or legal guardian must use the State Absentee Ballot Request form to request the ballot. (A "near-relative" means a spouse, brother, sister, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, mother-in-law, father-in-law, daughter-in-law, son-in-law, stepparent, or stepchild.)
Fill out the State Absentee Ballot Request Form and return it to your county Board of Elections no later than 5:00 pm Tuesday before the date of the election.
Military and overseas voting: Military and overseas voters have the choice of either requesting a mail-in absentee ballot the same way as other registered voters, or they can apply to register to vote and/or request an absentee ballot, by completing the Federal Postcard Application available online from the Federal Voting Assistance Program (https://www.fvap.gov) and send the form to their County Board of Elections using one of these methods:
- Mail: NC State Board of Elections
PO Box 27255
Raleigh, NC 27611-7255
- Email: ABSENTEE@ncsbe.gov
- Fax: (919) 715-0351 (only for Military and Overseas Citizens)
The deadline for UOCAVA citizens to register and/or request an absentee ballot is 5:00pm the day prior to Election Day. These voters may also elect to receive their balloting materials by mail, fax or email. For more information on military and overseas voting, click here.
SUBMITTING AN ABSENTEE BALLOT
Absentee By Mail: An application and ballot will be mailed to the voter after the receipt of the written request. Absentee ballots are available:
*50 days prior to the date of a statewide primary election, county bond election or any other election, except those listed below;
*60 days prior to the date of a statewide general election;
*30 days prior to municipal elections.
The voted ballot must be received in the County Board of Elections office by 5:00 p.m. on the day of the election in order to be counted.
Absentee One-Stop Early Voting: North Carolina voters are able to vote by Absentee One-Stop at all county Board of Elections offices during regular office hours. Click this link to find out the dates for One-Stop Early Voting.
Early voting qualifications: ONE-STOP early voting and registration is available for all North Carolina eligible voters. Find your location here.
Other information for early voting: Individuals who miss the registration deadline, may register in person and then vote at an one-stop absentee voting site in the person's county of residence, during the one-stop absentee voting period. To register and vote under this statutory provision, the person must:
-Sign and complete a voter registration form, attesting that the person meets each eligibility requirement under law. Such attestation is signed under penalty of a Class 1 felony.
VOTING ON ELECTION DAY
On election day, the hours for voting are from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Any voter in line as of 7:30 p.m. will be permitted to vote.
On election day, voters should present to vote at the voting site for their precinct in order to receive their proper ballot.
A voter’s precinct is based on the address where the voter was living 30 or more days prior to election day.
Photo ID is not required in any election. Following a trial in April 2021, a three-judge panel in the Holmes v. Moore case concluded that the voter photo ID law violated the North Carolina Constitution. The court’s decision, which was issued on Sept. 17, 2021, means that voters are not required to show photo ID in elections in North Carolina. Please check back for any updates here.
Provisional voting is a mechanism by which a citizen is guaranteed the opportunity to cast a ballot in the event that questions are raised about a voter's qualification to vote, the voter’s eligibility to vote in a given election, or the voter’s eligibility to vote a specific ballot style. For more information click here
Verifying Registration: voter registration verification
Deciding how to vote: https://votesmart.org/
Polling Place: Polling place locator
Verifying provisional ballot status: provisional ballot status verification
Verifying absentee ballot status: absentee ballot status verification