District of Columbia | Voting Guide

Registration Deadlines and Election Dates

Voter Registration Deadline: 21 days before Election Day

Eligible voters can also register to vote and cast a ballot at the same time during the early voting period and on Election Day

You must have resided in D.C. for at least 30 days as of Election Day to be eligible to vote in D.C.


  • Primary Election Voter Registration Deadline: May 31

  • Primary Election: June 21

  • General Election Voter Registration Deadline: October 18

  • General Election: November 8

Official Election Websites
Register at School or Home

Students have a decision about where to register to vote.

You have a right to register to vote at the address you consider the place where you live, whether that is your family's home or the place where you attend school. You should update your registration anytime this home address changes.

You may only be registered and vote in one location.

What Type of ID Do I Need to Register?

DC’s voter registration form asks for your DC driver’s license or ID number, or the last four digits of your Social Security number. Be sure to provide one of these numbers if you have it.

All applicants must provide proof of DC residence by including a copy of a document showing their name and current DC address. 

Acceptable IDs include:

  • Valid District of Columbia DMV-issued ID

  • Bank statement, utility statement, government check or paycheck issued within 90 days of the election

  • Other government document that shows the name and address of the voter

  • Students may present a lease or a tuition or housing bill from a District of Columbia college or univeristy, issued for the current academic or housing term

What Type of ID Do I Need to Vote?

You don’t have to show ID to vote in DC. If you register to vote during the early voting period or on Election Day, you will have to show proof of residence that includes your name and current address.

Where Do I Vote?

Make a plan. Look up your voting site and hours at: https://dcboe.org/Voters/Register-To-Vote/Check-Voter-Registration-Status

How Can I Vote?

By Mail

Early In Person

Election Day

Voting sites will be open from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. on Election Day. If you are in line by closing time then you have the right to vote.

Common Questions/Concerns

Registering to Vote Does Not Affect Your:

Federal Financial Aid

Where you register to vote will not affect federal financial aid such as Pell Grants, Perkins or Stafford loans, or your dependency status for FAFSA

Status as a Dependent on Your Parents’ Taxes

Being registered to vote at a different address from your parents does not prevent them from claiming you as a dependent on their taxes

Tuition Status

Being deemed out-of-state for tuition purposes does not prevent you from choosing to register to vote in your campus community

Will registering to vote in Washington D.C. affect my driver’s license or car registration?

A full-time student who is a resident of the District of Columbia is not required to obtain a D.C. license. For more information, visit the D.C. Department of Motor Vehicles website at https://dmv.dc.gov/service/driver-licenses.

Fair Elections Center and Campus Vote Project intend the information contained herein to be used only as a general guide. This document should not be used as a substitute for consultation with a licensed Washington, DC legal professional.


Last updated July 2021