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Voting Guide

Voter Registration Deadline: 30 days before Election Day


Same day registration is also available for presidential elections. However, if you register the day of the Presidential Election, you will only be allowed vote for the President and Vice-President.

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.

Rhode Island’s online form requires your Rhode Island driver’s license or ID number. Rhode Island’s voter registration form asks for your Rhode Island driver’s license or ID number, or the last four digits of your Social Security number.

Rhode Island law requires voters to show a current and valid photo ID when they vote in person. The list of acceptable forms of ID includes:


  • Rhode Island driver’s license or permit

  • Rhode Island voter ID card

  • United States passport

  • Student ID card issued by a U.S. educational institution

  • United States military ID card

  • ID card issued by the United States or the State of Rhode Island

  • Government issued medical card

  • Tribal ID


Registered voters who don’t have an acceptable photo ID can get a free voter ID at the Election Division office during normal business hours or select other locations on specific days. For more information, contact the Election Division at 401–222–2340 or elections@sos.ri.gov.


Voters who do not bring an acceptable ID to their polling place can vote using a standard provisional ballot. The ballot will be counted if the signature given at their polling place matches the signature on the voter registration.

Make a plan. Check your voter registration and absentee ballot status, or look up your voting site and hours at: https://vote.sos.ri.gov/Home/UpdateVoterRecord?ActiveFlag=0

By Mail


Any registered voter may vote by mail.


The mail ballot application form is available at: https://vote.sos.ri.gov/DataInformation/Publications

Applications must be received by the local board of canvassers no later than 4 p.m. on the 21st day before Election Day.


You can return your mail-in ballot by mail, in-person at the State Board of Election’s office, or in-person at a designated drop box. The State Board of Elections must receive the completed mail ballot by 8 p.m. on Election Day.


Find a list of drop-box locations at: https://ristate.maps.arcgis.com/apps/instant/nearby/index.html?appid=72c6ecd6bddd44cbbd3f007969fb1c35



Early In-Person


Any registered voter may cast an early ballot in person at their city or town hall during their regular business hours, in the 20 days before Election Day. Contact your local board of canvassers for their normal business hours.



Election Day


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

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 Rhode Island affect my driver’s license or car registration?

As a new Rhode Island resident, you may have to obtain a Rhode Island driver’s license and update your car’s registration, regardless of whether you register to vote there. For more information, you may wish to contact the Rhode Island Division of Motor Vehicles.

Fair Elections Center and Campus Vote Project intend the information contained herein is used only as a general guide. This document should not be used as a substitute for consultation with a licensed North Carolina legal professional.
 
Last updated March 2019