Montana Election Information

Get all the election and voter information you need below.

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Upcoming Elections in Your State

2014 Primary Election: June 3, 2014

2014 General Election: November 4, 2014

For more information, visit the Montana Secretary of State website.

Other Important Election Information

Poll hours of operation vary. Most polling places open at 7:00am.  Some smaller polling places may open their polling places at 12:00 noon.  All polling places close at 8:00pm.  Contact your local elections official for exact times.

Visit the Secretary of State's My Vote tool to find your polling place.

Your voter registration card lists the location of your neighborhood polling place. If you've misplaced your card, call your local elections office to find out where to vote.


Registration Deadlines

2014 Primary Election: May 6, 2014 & Same-Day

2014 General Election: October 5, 2014 & Same-Day

The registration deadline for the general election is 30 days before the election.  However, Montana also permits late registration until 8:00pm on the day of the election.  For late registration, you must show up at your local election office during business hours up to and including Election Day, fill out a voter registration card, and vote a ballot that you give to the election office staff.

PLEASE NOTE:  Late registration closes temporarily at 12:00 noon the day before the election, and reopens again on Election Day.

Identification Required for Registration

When filling out your registration form, you must provide a Montana driver's license or ID number, or the last four digits of your Social Security number.

If you have neither a driver's license or Social Security number, provide (in-person) or enclose (by mail) a copy of one of the following, showing both your name and current address:

  • Any photo ID
  • A current utility bill
  • Bank statement
  • Paycheck
  • Government check
  • Other government document that shows your name and current address

How to Check Registration

Visit the Secretary of State's My Vote tool to check your registration status.

Call 1-866-OUR-VOTE

Absentee Voting

If you are a registered voter in Montana, you may also vote by absentee ballot, even if you are able to vote in person on Election Day.  

Montana permits voters to be added to an annual list of absentee voters.  To apply, you should complete the Annual Absentee List Application.  Once on this list, the ballots for all elections for which you are eligible will be automatically mailed to you.  To remain on the list, you must complete and return an annual confirmation notice mailed to you by your local elections office.  

To vote absentee without being added to the annual absentee list, you should also send an Application for an Absentee Ballot.

Applications for an absentee ballot must be RECEIVED (postmark does not count) at the local county election office by noon on the day before the election. You may pick up an application at your local election office or at the Secretary of State's Office, or you may call either office and ask to have an application mailed to you. You may also download a free application.  Mail the application or drop it off at your local election office.  Once you've submitted your application, your absentee ballot will be mailed to you, unless you put on the application that you would prefer to have someone pick it up for you.

Once you've marked your ballot and signed the affirmation on the signature envelope, return it to your county elections office before the polls close on Election Day in the secrecy envelope that is provided.  The ballot must be RECEIVED by the county elections office by 8:00 pm on Election Day (a postmark does not count).

You may track the status of your absentee ballot at Montana's My Voter Page.

You must present ID when voting. When you enter your polling place, an election judge will greet you, ask your name, and confirm that you are registered to vote in that precinct. He or she will then ask you to show ID. This can be any current photo ID that shows your name (for example, a valid driver's license, school ID, state ID, or tribal ID) or a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, voter confirmation notice, government check or other government document that shows your name and current address.

  • If you do not have any of the items listed above, you can still vote by requesting and filling out a "Polling Place Elector ID" form, OR 
  • You can vote a provisional ballot.  Your provisional ballot will be counted if you provide one of the items on the list to the county elections office by 5:00pm the day after the election, or mail it to the county elections office postmarked by the day after the election.

You must re-register if you change your address or your name.

Military and overseas citizens can use the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA), also known as Standard Form 76, to register to vote and to request an absentee ballot.  Visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program's (FVAP) Montana-specific FPCA page.

Military and overseas citizens can send and receive voting materials by fax and email.  If you wish to use the fax or email options, you must indicate this on your FPCA.  Instructions for doing so are found on the FVAP's Montana-specific FPCA page.

Military and overseas citizens can use the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB) if they are concerned with receiving their printed ballot and returning it by the 8:00 p.m., Election Day deadline.  The FWAB is a blank ballot on which voters write-in their choices.  The FWAB may also be used  to register to vote and to apply for the absentee ballot, all in one step.  If the FWAB is being used to register to vote, it must be received by the voter registration deadline.  For specific instructions, visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program's Montana-specific FWAB page.

You cannot vote if you're a convicted felon serving a sentence in a penal institution. Formerly convicted felons who have been released, but are serving parole or probation are still able to register and vote.  If your registration is cancelled due to a felony conviction, you must re-register upon your release in order to vote.



Voter Checklist

For more information for voters with mental disabilities, visit The Bazelon Center for Mental Health Law and National Disability Rights Network’s document: “Voting Rights Guide for People with Mental Disabilities

For more information for student voters, visit the Montana Student Voting Guide from the Brennan Center for Justice.


Information provided by Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights



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