Voting key dates, resources, and hotline information

The Office of the New York State Attorney General (OAG) protects your right to vote.

 

Important dates and deadlines

Key dates for 2024June primaryNovember general election
Last day to register to voteJune 15October 26
Deadline to request absentee ballot by mail or onlineJune 15October 26
Early votingJune 15-23October 26-November 3
“Golden Day” 
Voters can register and vote on the same day.
June 15October 26
Deadline to request absentee or early mail ballot at local Board of ElectionsJune 24November 4
Election Day!
Last day to vote in person. Absentee ballot must be postmarked by this date. 
June 25November 5
Absentee or early mail ballots must be receivedJuly 2November 12
Absentee or early mail ballots must be postmarked no later thanJune 25November 5

Election hotline

Each year, for both the June primary and November general elections (and the April primary for presidential election years), OAG runs an Election Protection Hotline during the early voting period and on Election Day.

Experiencing problems voting?

Call 1-866-390-2992 or submit a voter complaint

The OAG volunteers will troubleshoot any issues, including working with local boards of elections when necessary.

The OAG has also compiled helpful information regarding New York State voter registration procedure; key deadlines; a resource guide to help you understand your voting rights, including when, where, and how to vote; and a guide to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). 

Topics covered

The information provided on our site does not apply to local village or school district elections. Please contact your local village clerk or local school board if you have questions about a local election.

Registration

You can register if you are:

  • a U.S. citizen
  • 16 years of age by the date you submit your application to register, and 18 years of age on or before the first election in which you will vote
  • a resident — for at least 30 days before the election — of New York and of the city, village, or county in which you intend to vote
  • not presently incarcerated for a felony (however, you can vote if you have been released from felony detention, or have been convicted for only a misdemeanor)
  • not found mentally incompetent by a court
  • not claiming the right to vote in any other location than your city and county of residence

You may re-register to vote if you have changed your name or moved from out of state.

Online: Keep your confirmation number. 

In person: Get a voter-registration form from your local board of elections or at any of these listed New York state agencies

If you are a student aged 16 or older, check with your local board of elections to see whether you can pre-register at your school or another location to vote in elections held after you turn 18. 

In New York City: New York City Board of Elections

Outside of New York City: New York State Board of Elections

If your information is not there or seems wrong, contact your local board of elections or the Office of the New York State Attorney General for help. 

Vote by mail

Absentee ballot

You can vote by mail using an absentee ballot, a paper form you fill out at home and return to your Board of Elections.

To request an absentee ballot, you must be any of the following:

  • absent from your county or, if you are a resident of New York City, absent from the five boroughs, on Election Day
  • unable to appear at the polls due to a temporary or permanent illness or disability, including COVID-19
  • unable to appear because you are the primary care giver of one or more individuals who are ill or have a physical disability
  • a resident or patient of a Veterans Health Administration Hospital
  • in jail or prison for any reason other than a felony conviction (this includes anyone who is awaiting grand jury action, awaiting trial, or serving a sentence for a misdemeanor)

Want help? You can have someone else deliver your application to your board of elections and bring your ballot to you. Be sure to write the name of that person in Box 6 on the form.

No matter which option you choose, observe the deadlines carefully.

Your ballot package contains:

  • absentee ballot
  • oath/security envelope
  • return envelope imprinted with “Official Election Mail” and addressed to your local board of elections (includes pre-paid postage)

To complete your ballot:

  1. Mark your ballot, following the instructions. Fold it up and place it in the oath/security envelope.
  2. Sign, date, and seal the oath/security envelope. Place it in the return envelope.
  3. Seal the return envelope.

To return your ballot, you can:

  • Mail your ballot. It must be postmarked no later than Election Day and received by your board of elections no more than a week after Election Day. Mail it early! Postage is now included!
  • Deliver your ballot during early voting. Bring it to an early-voting poll site in New York City if you live in New York City, or to any early-voting poll site in your county if you live outside the city, during the early-voting period.
  • Bring your ballot on Election Day. You can bring it to your local board of elections, or to a poll site in New York City if you live in New York City or in your county if you live outside New York City.

You can track your absentee ballot if you live in New York City. If you live outside of New York City, you can use a separate portal.

Request a disability-accessible absentee ballot through the New York State Board of Elections. This also comes with a postage-paid return envelope. You can sign the oath/security envelope on the raised marker (you can sign anywhere else on the envelope, if you have difficulty signing it on the marker).

You can also use an electronic voting method that lets you mark your ballot with your own assistive technology. Print out your completed ballot and return it to your local board of elections.

Early mail ballot

Early mail ballot is a way to vote by mail during the early voting period without having to go to the polls. Any registered voter may apply for an early mail ballot without providing an excuse.

No reason is required to vote by early mail ballot.

Want help? You can have someone else deliver your application to your board of elections and bring your ballot to you. Be sure to write the name of that person in Box 6 on the form.

No matter which option you choose, observe the deadlines carefully.

Your ballot package contains:

  • early mail ballot
  • oath/security envelope
  • return envelope imprinted with “Official Election Mail” and addressed to your local board of elections (includes pre-paid postage)

To complete your ballot:

  1. Mark your ballot, following the instructions. Fold it up and place it in the oath/security envelope.
  2. Sign, date, and seal the oath/security envelope. Place it in the return envelope.
  3. Seal the return envelope.

To return your ballot, you can:

  • Mail your ballot. It must be postmarked no later than Election Day and received by your board of elections no more than a week after Election Day. Mail it early! Postage is now included!
  • Deliver your ballot during early voting. Bring it to an early-voting poll site in New York City if you live in New York City, or to any early-voting poll site in your county if you live outside the city, during the early-voting period.
  • Bring your ballot on Election Day. You can bring it to your local board of elections, or to a poll site in New York City if you live in New York City or in your county if you live outside New York City.

You can track your early mail ballot if you live in New York City. If you live outside of New York City, you can use a separate portal.

Request a disability-accessible absentee ballot through the New York State Board of Elections. This also comes with a postage-paid return envelope. You can sign the oath/security envelope on the raised marker (you can sign anywhere else on the envelope, if you have difficulty signing it on the marker).

You can also use an electronic voting method that lets you mark your ballot with your own assistive technology. Print out your completed ballot and return it to your local board of elections.

Vote in person

Experiencing problems voting?

Call 1-866-390-2992 or submit a voter complaint

Early voting

Voting hours vary by poll site, so carefully note the hours listed by your local board of elections.

If you have problems or questions, or believe your polling location is improperly closed, call your local board of elections or contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

Election Day

To find out where you can vote in person on Election Day, contact:

All poll sites should be open from 6 a.m. through 9 p.m. If you believe your polling site is improperly closed, call your local board of elections, or contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

If you have a disability, a friend or relative may help you in the voting booth. Election inspectors at the site can also help and can provide assistive devices.

A poll worker may provide you with reasonable accommodations at their discretion, such as having a chair, having someone else stand in line for you, or moving to the front of the line if you cannot stand for long periods.

If you believe you have not received reasonable accommodations, call your local board of elections or contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

New York Voting Rights Act

The OAG promotes and protects the rights of all eligible New Yorkers to vote by investigating and addressing voting rights violations and by ensuring that all New York elections are run fairly and free from discrimination. 

FAQs

Vote by mail

New York City: Track the status of your ballot application

Outside New York City: Track the status of your ballot application

Contact your local board of elections. If your board of elections cannot help you, contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General's hotline for help.

Also consider voting early. Lines will probably be shorter during early voting. Just note that you will have to vote by affidavit ballot in person because you filed a request for an absentee ballot.

You may have made a mistake with your absentee or early mail ballot. You may be able to fix it if:

  • You forgot to sign, or include your oath/security envelope.
  • Your signature does not match the signature on file.
  • You marked your ballot rather than signing it, because of illness, physical disability, or inability to read, but did not have a witness.
  • The envelope is signed by someone else, such as someone who has power of attorney or who has helped you.
  • Your ballot was returned by mailed without a postmark within seven days after the election. 

If any of these took place, your local board of elections must provide you with a sworn statement (cure affirmation) for you to complete, sign, and return. You must return the cure affirmation (or have it postmarked) by the seventh business day after the notification was sent by mail or by the day before the election, whichever is later. You can return it by mail or in person.

If the affirmation addresses the error, your ballot will be counted. If it is rejected, you will be notified by your local board of elections within three business days of the rejection.

If you did not seal the envelope for your ballot, your local board of elections will notify you and provide you with a new ballot if time permits.

If you are concerned that you did not properly fill out your absentee or early mail ballot, or that your ballot will arrive too late, you can go to your polling site and request an affidavit ballot. However, if you correctly completed your absentee or early mail ballot and if it arrives at your local board of elections in time, your absentee or early mail ballot will be counted instead of your in-person affidavit ballot.

You can use an absentee ballot if you:

  • will be absent from your county of residence (for New York City residents, absent from New York City) on Election Day

  • have a temporary or permanent illness or disability, including COVID-19

  •  are the primary caregiver of an individual who has a temporary or permanent illness or disability

  • are a patient at a Veterans' Administration hospital

  • are detained in jail awaiting trial or an action by a grand jury, or are incarcerated for conviction on an offense other than a felony

You do not need a reason to vote by early mail ballot.

In-person voting

You are not required to show photo ID to vote anywhere throughout the state.

However, depending on when you registered, or if this is the first time you are voting, polling officials may require some form of identification. If this is the case, you may use a photo ID or a copy of any of the following documents:

  • current utility bill
  • bank statement
  • government check 
  • paycheck
  • other government document showing your name and address

If you do not have any of these forms of identification, you may cast an affidavit ballot unless a court says otherwise.

If someone improperly requests identification when you try to vote, contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

Poll workers may ask you for your date of birth to distinguish you from other voters if you have a common name or if they experience difficulty finding you in the pollbook. However, identification is generally not required to vote (other than to clear up the issues listed above), so poll workers may not request your date of birth as identification, if it would not otherwise be permissible.

If someone improperly requests your date of birth when you try to vote, contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

First, confirm that you are at the correct location. Check the appropriate website for voting early or on Election Day, or ask the inspector at the polling site to confirm your location.

If you believe you are at the correct site and are eligible to vote, you have the right to request an affidavit ballot. This is a provisional ballot that is not immediately scanned and counted on Election Day; it is set aside until election officials can verify your voter eligibility. Once confirmed, it is counted and tallied with the vote totals.

  • Complete the affidavit ballot and place it in the affidavit envelope. The election inspector will help you complete and properly document the envelope to provide information about your eligibility.
  • Later on, if election officials determine that you were eligible to vote and were at the correct site, your vote will be counted, and your voter registration will be updated for later elections. 
  • If you were at the wrong polling location but voting in the correct county, some of the races common to the poll site in which you voted will be counted.  You will receive a notice to that effect as well as a registration form to remedy issues in the future.

Affidavit ballots can be used when your voting eligibility is unclear because:

  • You moved within the state after registering.
  • You have “inactive” voter status.
  • Your registration was incorrectly transferred to a different address (even though you did not move).
  • Your registration poll records are missing on Election Day.
  • Your identity was not previously verified.
  • Your registration records do not show you enrolled in your party.
  • You are incorrectly identified as having already voted.
  • You requested an absentee or early mail ballot but elected to vote in person.

On the first day of early voting (10 days before Election Day), if you are eligible but not registered to vote, you may complete a conditional voter registration form and cast an affidavit ballot. This must be done in person at your local board of elections or an early voting poll site.

If poll workers at a poll site refuse to give you an affidavit ballot, or insist on first calling their board of elections to determine your eligibility, this practice is illegal. Immediately contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

Even if an election inspector believes you are not eligible to vote or that you are at the wrong poll site, you can request a court order to cast an in-person ballot that will be counted by the close of the polls.

If you decide to do this, the election inspector must give you a certificate to request a court order.

Election inspectors will fill out the certificate for you, with the signatures of election inspectors from each political party. They will direct you to your local board of elections office (or other location), where a judge is available to review and endorse your certificate, if it is valid. You can then return to your polling site with the certificate and cast your in-person ballot. 

You are entitled to dispute the challenge. An election inspector will administer a preliminary oath about your qualifications to vote, and then ask questions about the challenge:

  • If you refuse to take the oath or answer the questions, you will not be permitted to vote.
  • If the inspector believes you are qualified to vote or if the challenge is withdrawn, you will be allowed to complete and cast your ballot.
  • If the inspector is not satisfied with your answers, you may choose to take a specific oath to address the challenge (for instance, about your citizenship, residency, or voting status; bribery issues; or competency issues), after which you may be allowed to vote.
  • If an election inspector offers to remedy the situation with an affidavit ballot, you can insist on taking the necessary oath(s). This will allow your vote to be counted by the time the polls close, rather than having to wait for review after the election.

If you feel threatened, want assistance, or have questions about the process, contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

Official poll watchers are legitimate. These are people sent by candidates, political parties, or other organizations to report voting irregularities to the election inspector, a police officer, or the board of elections.

At a general or primary election, a party, political committee, or other organization may place three watchers at each election district at any time. Only one of these three may be within the guard rail, which is the part of the poll site containing the table used by election inspectors and board of elections equipment (privacy booths, ballot-marking device, and scanners).

Poll watchers can only watch — nothing more. If they work on behalf of a political party or candidate, engage you in political discussions, or interfere with your right to vote, they are violating the law.
However, poll watchers may challenge voters based on signature authenticity, residence, voting more than once, or a voter’s qualifications.

If you see a poll watcher behaving improperly, please contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

Voter intimidation, although very rare in New York, could include the following and other tactics:

  • individuals or groups waiting outside polling places and trying to scare people out of the voting line
  • poll watchers inside a polling place aggressively challenging a large group of voters, slowing down lines, and falsely hinting that voters are voting illegally
  • poll watchers near voting booths, standing in unauthorized areas, video recording or photographing someone else's ballot, or following or harassing voters in the polling place
  • individuals spreading rumors or making false statements that voting leads to negative consequences
  • individuals or groups displaying weapons, foreign military uniforms, or any military symbols or equipment outside polling locations

The Office of the New York State Attorney General takes any claim of voter intimidation seriously. If you see any of these behaviors, please contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

Watch out for phone calls, mailings, or messages in newspapers, social media, TV, or radio that discourage you from using an absentee ballot, voting early, or voting at all:

  • "Your vote is not private." This is untrue. How you vote will not be shared when you vote.
  • "Elections are used to crack down on warrants or tickets." This is a lie. Someone is trying to scare you to prevent you from voting.
  • “You will help the other party/candidate by voting.” Be wary of anyone trying to discourage you from voting.
  • "Your polling place/date has changed." Consult your local board of elections and the resources they have listed to double check any information you receive, especially information about where or when to vote.

Voter intimidation is a serious crime. If you experience any voter intimidation or misinformation, please contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

If you have moved within the state of New York, even if you have not yet updated your address on your voter registration, you are eligible to vote in person. You must cast an affidavit ballot at the poll site assigned to your new address. Fill out the ballot envelope completely so that your voter registration will be updated correctly.

If you have moved to or within New York City, check the New York City Board of Elections for guidance about where to vote.

If your new address is outside New York City, you can find your new poll site by contacting your local board of elections or the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

If you have moved to New York from another state, your voter registration must be received by 10 days before Election Day. You may mail in the registration, or you may register in person at your local board of elections office. As another option, on the first day of early voting (10 days before Election Day), you may complete a conditional voter registration and cast an affidavit ballot in person at the board of elections or an early-voting poll site, even if you were not previously registered in New York.

Poll site location changes are often necessary. Your local board of elections is juggling changes in poll-site needs and availability. In each election cycle, there is a new set of races, and the number of people who can vote in each race can change. And some voting sites, such as schools, can become unavailable.

But you should not receive any surprises about your poll site changing. If you already received a notice with your assigned poll site, you should get any last-minute poll-site changes by mail at least five days before the next election or registration deadline. For early-voting poll sites, you should receive notification at least five days before the early-voting period begins. If your board of elections cannot give you this notice, it must post signs at your previous polling location directing you to the correct location, or notify you in some other way.

If you believe that your polling place has been moved without adequate notice, call your local board of elections, or contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General for assistance, including by calling our hotline at 1-866-390-2992.

If you have a four-hour window when you are not working and the polls are open (for instance, if your shift ends at 5 p.m. and the polls are open until 9 p.m.), then your employer is not required to provide you with paid time off to vote.

If you do not have a four-hour window, you may claim up to two hours of paid time off. You must notify your employer at least two working days, but not more than 10 working days, before the day on which you wish to vote. If you provided notice but your employer still refuses to give you paid time off, contact the Office of the New York State Attorney General at 1-866-390-2992.

Sharpies and permanent markers are completely safe and legitimate for marking your ballot. The ballot is designed so that, even if your marks on one side of the paper bleed through, they will not affect races on the other side (if you have marked your ballot properly). In fact, many poll workers prefer Sharpies because they will not smudge or stain the glass on a ballot scanner.

COVID-19 considerations

You can send a friend or family member to your local board of elections to request an in-person absentee or early mail ballot on your behalf up until the day before Election Day. If that deadline has passed, you may be able to request curbside voting at your polling location since the risk of transmitting COVID-19 is greatly reduced in outdoor settings.  Check with your local board of elections to see if they will accommodate your situation.