If you are convicted of a MISDEMEANOR or are awaiting trial for a FELONY charge you DO NOT lose your right to vote.
You can register and vote, even if you’re in jail. Use the Absentee Ballot Request Online Portal or complete and mail an Absentee Ballot Request Form to your county board of elections. Find both at: demnc.co/absentee
Your absentee ballot request form must be received by your county board of elections at least one week before the election. Provide an address on your absentee request where you can receive mail – either the jail, your home, or the home of a near relative who can help you vote (spouse, brother, sister, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, mother-in-law, father-in-law, daughter-in-law, son-in-law, stepparent, or stepchild). NOTE – All voters voting by mail now need to include in their ballot return envelope either (1) a photocopy of their photo ID or (2) an ID exception form saying they are unable to attach a copy of photo ID. Learn more at: gotidnc.org
If you are convicted of a FELONY, you TEMPORARILY lose your right to vote.
In NC, you get back your right to vote once you have completed your sentence, including probation, post-release supervision, and parole. Fines, fees, and restitution alone do not make you ineligible to vote. You just register and vote like any eligible voter, and you don’t need a special document that says your rights are restored. Please call 877-880-VOTE (Forward Justice’s hotline) for the latest rules.
REGISTER ONLINE OR BY MAIL
NOTE: You now need to show an NC driver’s license or other “acceptable photo ID” to vote with a regular ballot, beginning in the 2023 municipal elections. Learn more at gotidnc.org.
- GO ONLINE to demnc.co/register to find steps to register to vote online or by downloading a mailable registration form.
- MAIL or deliver the form to your county board of elections at least 25 days before Election Day. Find your county board at demnc.co/yourboe.
- CONFIRM your registration by visiting demnc.co/lookup or look for a postcard in the mail from your county showing your registration was received and other info
SAME-DAY REGISTRATION & VOTING
Not locked up? You can register to vote in-person at any Early Voting site in your county – and vote there, too. You can only do this during Early Voting (NOT on Election Day). Find the early voting sites in your county here: demnc.co/voteearly
To register during Early Voting, show the poll worker one of the following with your name and current address: a utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, another current government document, or a current document issued from the institution that issued the photo ID that the voter uses to satisfy the voter photo ID requirement. The document may be a digital image on your cell phone.
For the latest on where or how to vote, call 888-OUR-VOTE or visit ncvoter.org.
(Updated January 2024)