Illinois | Voting Guide

 
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Registration Deadlines and Election Dates

Voter Registration Deadline: 28 days before Election Day for registration by mail and 16 days before Election Day for online registration.


Grace period registration is available in person at specific locations after the registration deadline and at some polling places on Election Day. Contact your local election authority or check online for locations.

 
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Official Election Websites

More election information at: https://www.elections.il.gov/Default.aspx


Online voter registration available at: ova.elections.il.gov/


Mail-in PDF voter registration available at: https://www.elections.il.gov/DocDisplay.aspx?Doc=/Downloads/VotingAndRegistrationSystems/PDF/R-19.pdf&MID=21

 
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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.

 
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What Type of ID Do I Need to Register?


  • The Illinois online voter registration portal requires your Illinois driver's license or ID number

  • The Illinois paper voter registration form asks for your Illinois 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.

  • If you are registering to vote for the first time, are applying by mail, and do not have an ID number or Social Security number, you must submit a copy of a current and valid photo ID, or a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows your name and current address. This type of documentation includes a student ID card, coupled with either a copy of your contract or lease for a residence, or any postmarked mail delivered to you at your current residence address.

 
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What Type of ID Do I Need to Vote?

You do not need ID to vote in Illinois.

 
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Where Do I Vote?

Make a plan. Look up your voting site and hours at: https://ova.elections.il.gov/RegistrationLookup.aspx

 
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How Can I Vote?

By Mail

  • Any registered Illinois voter can vote by mail without an excuse

  • A mail-in ballot application can be submitted in-person, by mail or online. You must submit your absentee ballot application by mail no later than 5 days before the election.

  • You can return your completed mail-in ballot by mail, in-person at your local election authority's office, or at a designated drop box location. Completed mail-in ballots must either be returned in-person by the close of the polls on Election Day or be postmarked on or before Election Day and received no later than 14 days after Election Day.

  • You can find a list of drop box locations in your election jurisdiction at: https://www.elections.il.gov/VotingAndRegistrationSystems/VoteByMailBallotDropBoxLocations.aspx?T=637636656789293501

Early In-person


Election Day

  • Voting sites will be open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Election Day. If you are in line by the closing time, then you have a right to cast a ballot.

  • If you requested an absentee ballot you can still vote in person if you sign an affidavit stating you either never received your absentee ballot or that the election authority did not receive your ballot.

 
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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 Illinois affect my driver’s license or car registration?

As a resident of Illinois, you may be required to obtain an Illinois driver’s license or update your car registration, regardless of whether you register to vote there. For more information, you may wish to contact the Illinois Department of Motor Vehicles.

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 Illinois legal professional.

 

Last updated July 2021