Information below last updated in Fall 2014. Please check back soon for 2015 registration dates and election information.
During general elections, polls are open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.
During primary elections, polls are open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. in New York City and the counties of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Putnam and Erie. In all other counties, polls open at 12 noon and close at 9p.m.
New York DOES NOT have early voting.
If you are registering by mail, your application must be postmarked 25 days before the election and received no later than the twentieth day before the election
If you are registering in person, you may register at your local board of elections or any state agency participating in the National Voter Registration Act, on any business day throughout the year but, to be eligible to vote in the State and Local Primary, your application must be received 25 days before the election.
However, if you have been honorably discharged from the military or have become a naturalized citizen after the registration deadline, you may register in person at the board of elections and vote in the general election held at least ten days after such registration.
How to Check if You Are Registered
Call 1-866-OUR-VOTE or check the New York State Board of Election’s voter registration lookup page here.
How to Register
Individuals may register to vote online in New York. You will need to create a MyDMV account. Online voter registration requires that you have a New York State Driver’s License, New York State Learner Permit or New York State Non-Driver ID, and your social security number. If you have moved, you must first update your address with DMV, which you can do through the same website provided above. Online applications must be submitted on or before the deadline to be valid for any specific election.
In-Person or by Mail
You may also register to vote in person at your county board of elections. You can locate your county board here.
Voter registration forms may also be downloaded from the New York Board of Elections Website in either English or Spanish. You may also fill out your form online by typing the necessary information into the PDF form and printing it out, also in either English or Spanish, although these files are larger, so they may take longer to load on computers with slower internet connections. Applicants can mail completed voter registration forms to their county board of elections. Contact information for county boards is located here. Applications must be mailed in at least 25 days before an election you want to vote in to be eligible.
In order to vote, New York law requires that you MUST:
Identification Required for Registration
The New York Voter Registration Application asks voters to provide a DMV identification number (either a driver’s license number or a non-driver ID number) or else the last four digits of their Social Security Number.
If a voter does not have either a DMV or Social Security Number, she or he may use one of the following acceptable forms of ID to establish her or his identity:
An applicant may include a copy of one of those types of ID with their voter registration form. If an applicant’s identity cannot be verified before Election Day, she or he will be asked for ID when she or he votes for the first time.
If You Want to Vote Early
New York does not have early voting.
If You Want to Vote Absentee
The following persons are qualified to vote by absentee ballot:
Procedures for Voting by Absentee Ballot
Voters who meet the absentee ballot requirements may vote absentee by mail or in person.
Visit your county board of elections office (find yours here). You can pick up an application, fill it out, and deliver it to the county board through the day before the election.
You can request the application online, by sending a letter to your county board of elections, or by picking it up from your county board in person. If applying by mail, the county board office must receive the absentee ballot application no earlier than 30 days and no later than seven days prior to the election. Your letter must include the following information:
Your ballot must be returned to your county board by the close of polls on Election Day, 9:00p.m.on the day of the election. Be sure to carefully follow the instructions on your absentee ballot. You may return the ballot personally or by mail. You may also have another person return the ballot for you, but you must first indicate that person’s name on your absentee ballot application.
You must sign the oath on the envelope used to return the absentee ballot. If you cannot sign the oath on your absentee ballot envelope because of illness, physical disability or illiteracy, you must make your mark and have the mark witnessed by someone you designate.
Voting in Person after Requesting an Absentee Ballot
If you requested an absentee ballot, you can only vote at your polling place on Election Day if you provide the poll workers at your precinct a certificate from the County Board that your absentee ballot has been returned to the board unmarked.
Identification Requirements to Register to Vote
Applicant must provide either a valid DMV identification number (driver’s license or non-driver ID) or the last four digits of your social security number. An applicant who does not have one of these forms of ID can use the following:
The New York Voter Registration Application states that one must attach an ID to the application if one is registering for the first time in the county. If an applicant does not provide this identification information at the time of application, he/she will be required to provide this information when voting.
Identification Requirements to Cast a Ballot
If an applicant does not provide this identification information at the time of application, he/she will be required to provide this information when voting.
If you move to a new county you must re-register to vote. Send your voter registration form with the new information to your new county board of elections. You can obtain a Voter Registration Form from your local board of elections or any state agency participating in the National Voter Registration Act (a list of participating agencies is available here), on any business day throughout the year. You can also download the form here in English or Spanish. You cannot vote in your new county until you re-register to vote there.
Special services are provided to assist military and overseas civilian voters participate in elections. If you are a military or overseas civilian voter who is eligible to vote in New York, you can find out more at the New York Secretary of State Board of Elections site here.
Military and overseas citizens can also 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) New York-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 New York-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 close of polls on Election Day. 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 New York page to download the form.
A person who has been convicted of a felony (either under New York law, federal law, or another state’s law if that offense would also be a crime in New York) may not vote unless:
However, the governor of New York may grant a pardon that does not restore a person’s voting rights until it is later restored separately.
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.”
Information provided by Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights
Conducting a Voter Registration Drive in your state? Here are some resources.