South Carolina | Voting Guide

 
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Registration Deadlines and Election Dates

Voter Registration Deadline: 30 days before Election Day. Mail in registration forms must postmarked no later than 30 days before Election Day.

 
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Official Election Websites
 
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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?

South Carolina’s voter registration form asks for the last four digits of your Social Security number. If you are registering by mail and for the first time in your county, you must attach a copy of a current valid photo ID or a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck or other government document that shows your name and address in the county.


The online registration form requires a valid South Carolina driver's license or state ID number and your full Social Security Number.

 
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What Type of ID Do I Need to Vote?

South Carolina requires voters to present ID to vote. Approved IDs include:

  • A South Carolina driver’s license

  • A Photo ID issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles

  • A U.S. Passport

  • A Military ID with a photo

  • A South Carolina voter registration card with a photo


If you do not have one of these forms of ID and are already registered to vote, you can go to your county voter registration or local DMV office, provide your date of birth and the last four digits of your Social Security number, and take a photo for a free photo ID.


Voters whi have experienced a reasonable impediment in obtaining photo ID may vote a provisional ballot by (i) bringing their non-phoyo voter registration card to the polls and (ii) signing an affadavit identifying a reasonable impediment. A reasonable impediment is any valid reason, beyond the voter's control, which created an obsticle to obtaining a Photo ID. Some examples include:

  • Disability or illness

  • Work schedule conflict

  • Lack of transportation

  • Lack of a birth certificate

  • Family responsibilities

  • Religious objection to being photographed

  • Any other obstacle the voter believes is reasonable


For more information about Voter ID in South Carolina, please visit: https://scvotes.gov/node/235

 
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Where Do I Vote?

Make a plan. Check your voter registration and absentee ballot status, look up your voting site and hours at https://www.scvotes.gov/.

 
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How Can I Vote?

By Mail


South Carolina requires an excuse to vote by mail. Registered voters who can vote absentee include:

  • Students attending school outside their county of residence

  • Persons with physical disabilities

  • Persons who, for reasons of employment, will not be able to vote on Election Day

  • Government employees serving outside their county of residence on Election Day

  • Persons who plan to be on vacation outside their county of residence on Election Day

  • Persons attending sick or physically disabled persons

  • Persons age 65 years of age or older


A full list of qualifying reasons and the absentee ballot request form are available at: https://www.scvotes.gov/absentee-voting.


Mail ballot request forms may be submitted by mail, email, fax, or personal delivery and must be returned to the county voter registration office by 5 p.m. on the 4th day before Election Day.


Completed mail ballots must be signed by a received by your county voter registration office by 7 p.m. on Election Day. However, it is recommended that voters submit their request forms no later than 14 days before Election Day, to ensure timely reciept and return of the ballot.



Early In-Person


Registered voters who qualify to vote by mail may alternatively cast an absentee ballot in person at their county's voter registration office until 5 p.m. the day before Election Day. Some countues may set up additional early in-person voting locations for certian elections. Please contact your county voter registration office for more information.



Election Day


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


Curbside voting is available for voters with disabilities. For more information, visit: https://www.scvotes.gov/voters-disabilities.

 
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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 South Carolina affect my driver’s license or car registration?

As a new resident of South Carolina, you may be required to make changes to your driver's license or car registration, regardless of whether you register to vote there. You may with to contact the South Carolina 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 South Carolina legal professional.

 

Last updated July 2021