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Wisconsin voter registration
- In Person: Election Day.
- By Mail: Postmarked 20 days before Election Day.
- Online: 20 days before Election Day.
If the voter registration deadline has passed, you can still register to vote in person up until Election Day. You can register to vote in person at the Municipal Clerk's office up until 5:00 p.m. or close of business (whichever is later) the Friday before Election Day. You also can register to vote in person at your polling place on Election Day.
- To register in Wisconsin you must:
- be a citizen of the United States
- be a resident of Wisconsin for at least 10 days
- be 18 years old
- not have been convicted of treason, felony or bribery, or if you have, your civil rights have been restored
- not be incapable of understanding the objective of the elective process or under guardianship
- Use our Register to Vote Tool to fill out the National Voter Registration Form.
- Sign and date your form. This is very important!
- Mail or hand-deliver your completed form to the address we provide.
- Make sure you register before the voter registration deadline.
- If you have been convicted of a felony and have questions about whether you can register to vote, visit Restore Your Vote to determine your eligibility.
Wisconsin absentee ballots
- In Person:
- By Mail: 5 days before Election Day.
- Election Day.
- Any registered Wisconsin voter may apply for an absentee ballot and vote by mail.
- When voting by absentee ballot, you must submit a copy of a valid photo ID with your absentee ballot unless you are exempt from this requirement by statute (typically, certain military and overseas voters) or may have an alternative process to verify your identity. A list of valid IDs is available below.
- Use our Absentee Ballot Tool to prepare your application.
- Sign and date the form. This is very important!
- Return your completed application to your Local Election Office as soon as possible. We'll provide the mailing address for you.
- All Local Election Offices will accept mailed or hand-delivered forms. If it's close to the deadline, call and see if your Local Election Office will let you fax or email the application.
- Make sure your application is received by the deadline. Your application must actually arrive by this time -- simply being postmarked by the deadline is insufficient.
- Please contact your Local Election Office if you have any further questions about the exact process.
- Once you receive the ballot, carefully read and follow the instructions.
- Sign and date where indicated.
- Provide a copy of a valid photo ID, if you are required to do so
- Mail your voted ballot back to the address indicated on the return envelope.
- Your voted ballot must arrive by the deadline or it will not be counted.
Wisconsin early voting
- 15 days before Election Day.
- 4 days before Election Day.
Wisconsin voter ID
If you are voting in person in Wisconsin (early or on Election Day), you must present valid photo ID at the time you vote. The following forms of ID are acceptable for voting purposes and can be unexpired or expired after the date of the most recent general election (currently, the November 8, 2016 election):
- A Wisconsin DOT-issued driver license, even if driving privileges are revoked or suspended
- A Wisconsin DOT-issued identification card
- A Wisconsin DOT-issued identification card or driver license without a photo issued under the religious exemption
- Military ID card issued by a U.S. uniformed service
- A U.S. passport
- An identification card issued by a federally recognized Indian tribe in Wisconsin (can be expired or unexpired)
- A photo identification card issued by a Wisconsin accredited university or college that contains date of issuance, signature of student, and an expiration date no later than two years after date of issuance. Also, the university or college ID must be accompanied by a separate document that proves enrollment. (May be used even if expired before the most recent general election.)
- Free Wisconsin state ID card
These photo IDs are also acceptable for voting purposes, but must be unexpired:
- A veteran's photo identification card issued by the Veterans Health Administration of the federal Department of Veterans Affairs
- A certificate of naturalization that was issued not earlier than two years before the date of Election Day at which it is presented
- A driving receipt issued by Wisconsin DOT (valid for 45 days)
- An identification card receipt issued by Wisconsin DOT (valid for 45 days)
- A temporary identification card receipt issued by Wisconsin DOT through the Identification Petition Process (IDPP) (valid for 180 days)
- A citation or notice of intent to revoke or suspend a Wisconsin DOT-issued driver license that is dated within 60 days of the date of the election.
- A photo identification card issued by a Wisconsin accredited university, college or technical college that contains date of issuance, signature of student, and an expiration date no later than two years after date of issuance. (Also, the university, college, or technical college ID must be accompanied by a separate document that proves enrollment.)
Important things to know:
- There is no such thing as a "Wisconsin Voter ID Card." The new Voter Photo ID Law uses existing photo IDs for people to prove their identity before voting.
- The address on your ID doesn't have to be current. And the name on your ID doesn't need to be an exact match for your name in the poll book. (So, Richards who go by Rich, Bobs who are also Roberts, and Susans with IDs for Sue can all relax.)
- Of course, there are certain requirements. Your ID should look like you. Even if you've colored your hair, shaved your beard or lost some weight, as long as your photo ID reasonably resembles you, it should be accepted.
When voting by absentee ballot, you must submit a copy of a valid photo ID with your absentee ballot unless you are exempt from this requirement by statute (typically, certain military and overseas voters) or may have an alternative process to verify your identity. There are also accommodations in the law for absentee voters who cannot make it to a polling place because they are indefinitely confined, or live in a nursing home or care facility. For these voters, the witness' signature on the Absentee Ballot Certificate Envelope satisfies the photo ID requirement.