Guide to Voting
1. Voter registration
Deadline to REGISTER/UPDATE: OCTOBER 24, 2020
Online Link to Application:
2. Check Your registration
Why check your registration? Your address is where election officials send notices, application forms to receive your ballot in the mail, and more. Additionally, poll workers will check if the address on your voter registration matches the address on your ID at the polls.
Check Registration Here: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterreg/regtovote/search.aspx
Update Registration Here: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/updatereg.html
- Is your name spelled correctly? (Correct hyphenations, middle initials, etc)
- Correct Address
- Active Voter Status (if not update by sending in another online/mail voter application)
- Correct Date of Birth
- Correct Political Party preference
3. Order your mail ballot
Deadline for absentee mail ballot application: Must be received by October 22, 2020 11:59pm Local time
We recommend requesting your absentee mail ballot as soon as possible and well in advance of this deadline in order to ensure that you receive your ballot in time.
Track Absentee Ballot: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/absenteeballotstatus/absentee/search
Voted absentee ballots CANNOT be delivered to a polling place on Election Day. A voter’s
options if they have not returned their absentee ballot by Election Day are:
Deliver voted absentee ballot to the county auditor’s office before the polls close on
Surrender one’s voted absentee ballot at the polls and vote a regular ballot.
Vote a provisional ballot at the polls if one cannot surrender their voted absentee ballot.
Deadline to return absentee mail Ballot: no later than noon november 3, 2020
Surrendering Your Absentee Ballot:
Iowa has a Surrender Rule. If you have a desire to vote in person on Election Day but you are
registered to vote via absentee ballot, then you should bring your ballot to surrender and then
vote in person using an official ballot.
If you do not have your absentee ballot to surrender, there does not seem to be an electronic poll book in Illinois that will allow you to vote with an official ballot, and you will be forced to vote with a provisional ballot.
4. Early Voting Information
- Iowa only has early in-person absentee voting
- 29 days prior to Election Day until 5PM on the day before Election Day. Early voting will be available at the Commissioner’s Office as well as at any satellite locations designated by election officials. Voters can petition for establishment of a satellite voter location. Locations established by petition must be open for at least six hours a day. To find a polling place visit: https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/auditors/auditorslist.html
- Iowa voters are required to show an Iowa driver’s license or non-operator ID, U.S. passport, U.S. military ID or veteran’s ID, tribal ID/document or Iowa voter ID card at the polls before they vote. A voter without one of the listed forms of ID may have the voter’s identity attested to by another registered voter in the precinct or may prove identity and residence using Election Day Registration documents. Voters without the necessary ID or an attester will be offered a provisional ballot and can provide ID up until the time of the county canvass of votes (Monday after election day for Primary and General Elections).
- For a list of acceptable identification and other frequently asked questions visit:https://sos.iowa.gov/elections/voterinformation/voterIDfaq.html#13
- For more information regarding federal, state and local elections contact your state election official online: https://sos.iowa.gov . To contact Iowa Secretary of State, Paul D. Pate call 888.767.8683 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
5. Be a Poll Worker
- Become a poll worker! Election offices are expecting shortages in poll workers due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Poll workers must be 16 years old or over, and a registered voter (if over 18) in their county
- Sign up here: https://pollworker.iowa.gov/