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Elections / Municipal government

Everything you need to know to vote in the Nov. 7 general election in Pennsylvania

How do I register to vote? What is the deadline to request a mail-in or absentee ballot? Do I need identification to vote in person? This guide has you covered.

Are you voting in person or by mail in the next election? (Photo by Pexels user Edmond Dantès, used via a Creative Commons license)

This article was written by Cassie Miller of the Pennsylvania Capital-Star, where it originally appeared. It is republished here with permission.

The November general election is 10 weeks away.

To help voters prepare to cast their ballots, Pennsylvania Capital-Star has compiled this guide of deadlines and helpful resources.

How do I register to vote in Pennsylvania?

New voters can register one of four ways — online, by mail, at a PennDOT driver’s license center, or at your county registration office. County registration offices can be found here.

The deadline to register to vote in the November election is Oct. 23.

How do I find out if I am already registered?

Voters can check their registration status online.

You can also update your voter registration information to change your address, party affiliation or name in-person, by mail, or using the online form.

If voting by mail:

What is the deadline to request a mail-in or absentee ballot?

Voters have until Oct. 31 to request a mail-in or absentee ballot. Ballot request forms can be submitted online.

How do I return my mail-in or absentee ballot?

Once your mail-in ballot is filled out and signed, put it in the secrecy envelope and put the sealed secrecy envelope into the official envelope. Make sure to sign the form.

Pennsylvania law requires that voters return their own ballot. The only exceptions to this are for voters with a disability who have designated someone in writing to deliver their ballot.

Mail-in ballots can be returned by mail or taken to your local elections office. All ballots must be received by 8 p.m. on Election Day.

How do I know if my county has ballot drop boxes?

Voters can find a complete list of ballot drop box locations here.

How do I know my ballot was received?

You should receive an email confirmation when your ballot is received by the county elections office.

If voting in person:

How do I find my polling place?

Voters can find their polling locations here or by contacting their local election office.

When do polls open on Election Day?

Precincts are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Election Day.

Do I need identification to vote in person?

If you’ve voted at your polling place before, you do not need to bring an ID to cast your ballot.

First-time voters, or voters whose polling location has changed, must show identification. Accepted forms of identification include:

  • Driver’s license
  • Military, student, or employee ID
  • Voter registration card
  • Firearm permit
  • Current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, or government check
  • Any ID issued by the commonwealth or federal government

Pennsylvania Capital-Star is part of States Newsroom, a network of news bureaus supported by grants and a coalition of donors as a 501c(3) public charity. Pennsylvania Capital-Star maintains editorial independence. Contact Editor Kim Lyons for questions: Follow Pennsylvania Capital-Star on Facebook and Twitter.

Companies: State of Pennsylvania

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