Massachusetts | Voting Guide

Registration Deadlines and Election Dates

Voter Registration Deadline: 10 days before Election Day


  • Presidential Primary Election Registration Deadline: February 12

  • Presidential Primary Election: March 3

  • Partisan Primary (Other Offices) Registration Deadline: August 26

  • Partisan Primary (Other Offices): September 15

  • General Election Registration Deadline: October 24

  • General Election: November 3

Official Election Websites
Register at School or Home

Students have a choice about where to register to vote.


Students attending college may register at their campus address or choose to remain registered or register at their permanent or home address.


You may only be registered and vote in one location.

What Type of ID Do I Need to Register?

Massachusetts’ mail-in voter registration form asks for your Massachusetts 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.

To complete your voter registration online, you must have a Massachusetts-issued driver’s license or ID.

What Type of ID Do I Need to Vote?

You may be asked to present ID when voting in person, or mail a copy of your ID when voting by mail, if any of the following apply to you:

  • You are voting for the first time in Massachusetts in a federal election

  • You are an inactive voter

  • You are casting a provisional or challenged ballot

  • The poll worker has a reasonable suspicion that leads them to ask for your ID

Acceptable forms of ID include a Massachusetts driver’s license or state ID card, recent utility bill, rent receipt, lease, copy of a voter registration affidavit, or any other printed identification that has your name and current address. For a full list of acceptable identification, visit

If you cannot show ID, you have the right to cast a provisional ballot.

Where Do I Vote?

Make a plan. Look up your voting site and hours at:

How Can I Vote?


By Mail 

  • All voters are eligible for vote absentee without an excuse. 

  • The absentee ballot application can be found at It can be submitted by mail, email, fax, or in person to your local election office.

  • All Massachusetts registered voters who registered to vote prior to September 1, 2020 will be mailed an absentee ballot application by September 14. 

  • Deadline for absentee ballot applications to be received October 28

  • Absentee ballots must be postmarked by November 3 and cannot be received by your local election’s office later than November 6.

Early In-person

No excuse is required to vote early in-person. Early voting locations differ from your assigned Election Day voting location, so check with your local elections office for times and locations, or check online at

Election Day

Voting sites will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. for statewide elections, but some municipalities may open their polling places earlier. Contact your local clerk to verify polling hours. If you are in line by the time polls close, you have a 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 Massachusetts affect my driver’s license or car registration?

Only Massachusetts residents may participate in Massachusetts elections. As a resident of Massachusetts, you may be required to obtain a Massachusetts driver’s license or update your car registration. For more information, you may wish to contact the Massachusetts 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 Massachusetts legal professional.


Last updated September 2020