If you need help voting, you have lots of options! You can bring someone with you, ask an election judge for help, use a machine to mark your ballot or even vote from your car.
In a state or federal election, every employee has the right to be excused from work to vote on Election Day without penalty or loss of salary or wages as per Minnesota Statute 204C.04.
You are welcome to bring a relative, friend or neighbor with you to help you as long as that person is not your employer or your union representative. The person you bring with you can help you in all parts of the voting process, including in the voting booth; however, helpers can only physically mark ballots for up to three voters in an election. In addition, they are not allowed to make choices for you, share how you vote with others or try to influence you to vote a certain way. If you have someone help you mark your ballot, you are welcome to show your ballot privately to an election judge to check that it is correctly marked.
All Absentee / Early Voting Centers and the polls on Election Day are equipped with ballot marking devices that can mark a ballot for you. It gives you privacy if you cannot or choose not to vote using a pen. These ballot marking devices can help you:
You may also ask election judges for assistance. Election officials are happy to work together to assist with:
If you cannot easily leave your vehicle to enter a polling place, you can ask to have a ballot brought out to you. This is known as “Curbside Voting.”
Specific directions how to do this will be posted here closer to Election Day.
Please visit Safe At Home: An Address Confidentiality well in advance of the election if you are in a situation where you wish to vote but fear for your safety if your address were to be disclosed in voter records.
Ramsey County Elections contracts with ARC Translation Services to provide telephone translation services for all voters in Ramsey County who require assistance for in-person absentee voting, early voting or election day voting. Alternately, you may bring someone with you to the polls to translate. To view forms and directions, please select from the materials below. To request materials in an alternative format such as Braille, please call 1-877-600-8683.
To vote in Minnesota, you must live in the state for at least 20 days before Election Day. If you meet this requirement, you can register to vote on Election Day
If you move from Minnesota to another state within 30 days before Election Day, you might not be eligible to vote in your new state.
To vote in Minnesota, you must live in the state for at least 20 days before Election Day. If you meet this requirement, you can register to vote on Election Day.
If you have lived in Minnesota for fewer than 20 days before Election Day, you cannot vote in Minnesota for that election. However, you will be able to cast a presidential absentee ballot.
If you are feeling sick on Election Day, are a patient in a hospital or other medical facility (including a nursing home), are a resident of a shelter or assisted living facility, or are disabled, you may enlist someone you know to help you vote.
Each agent is allowed to deliver and return ballots for a maximum of three voters.
A flowchart outlining the process of absentee voting using an agent for delivery can be downloaded for easy reference.
On Election Day, you can also vote from your car at your polling location. When you arrive, have someone in your car let the election judges know you would like to exercise this option. Alternatively, you can contact Ramsey County Elections and let them know you would like to exercise this option.
If you are displaced by a fire, flood or other natural disaster, where you vote from depends on whether you intend to return to your home once it is made habitable again.
If you do not intend to return to the home after it is made habitable, then you can no longer vote from that address. In this case, you should register and vote from the location where you have been staying or from your new permanent address.
If you are homeless, you can register to vote using the location of where you sleep as your address. You may need to go to the polling place with someone (see details below) who can confirm where you are living.
When you register to vote, you must provide your current residence. This is the place where you sleep, so if you sleep in a shelter, at a friend's house, or outside somewhere, that is your voting residence.
If you sleep outside, write a description of its location on line four of your voter registration application. For example, "In the NW corner of Jefferson Park near the intersection of Winston Ave. and Smith St." Remember to bring someone with you who is registered to vote at the polling place and who can, under oath, confirm that you reside there.
If you register before Election Day using an outdoor location as your residence, your voter record will be marked 'challenged' because the county could not confirm a specific street address. You will still be able to vote, but at the polling place on Election Day you will be asked to swear under oath that you are living at that location. In order to better ensure your registration remains active through Election Day, it is best to register within two months of that date.
You can also register on Election Day. You will need to show proof of residence.
If you live outside, in a shelter, or are staying at a friend's house, you may not have any documents proving you live there. If so, a registered voter from your precinct can go with you to the polling place to sign an oath confirming where you live.
If you live in a shelter, a staff person can go with you to the polling place to confirm you live at the shelter.
If your home is in foreclosure, you can use it as your voting residence as long as you still reside there.
If you move from the property and do not intend to return, you can no longer vote from that address. Instead, your voting residence will be the address of where you are currently staying, even if you are temporarily with family or friends. You will need to update your voter registration with your new address.
No one can legally challenge your voter registration simply because they know your house is in foreclosure. To legally challenge your registration, a challenger must personally know that you moved from the house and do not plan to come back.
Residential facilities include:
If you need to register on Election Day, you must provide proof-of-residence. This can be difficult when you live in a residential facility. One simple way you can provide proof-of-residence is to ask facility staff to go with you on Election Day to ‘vouch’ for you. Vouching is when the staff swears that they personally know you live in the facility.
Any staff person can vouch for all eligible voters who are residents of the facility. However, staff must prove their employment with election officials. Methods of proof include:
If you live in a nursing home, an assisted-living facility, residential treatment center, group home or battered women's shelter, you can ask someone to pick up and return an absentee ballot for you. Read more about agent delivery
Visit the Ramsey County Elections webpage to find out how to have an absentee ballot mailed to your home or how to cast an ballot prior to Election Day in person.
Your name and address are public when you register to vote. However, if you have safety or privacy concerns, there are ways to register and vote without making your information public.
If you have extreme safety needs, the Safe at Home Address Confidentiality Program can help.
When you enroll in this program, all voting is done by absentee ballot through the mail through the Safe at Home office. Your name and address is never shared with your local elections office. Only your marked ballot is counted.
This program is administered by the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State and offers much more than confidential voting. It is available for people with very high safety concerns. When you enroll in Safe at Home, the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State assigns you a post office box address that you can use in place of your real address. This alternate address can be used for all your interactions with others and must be accepted by all public offices, private companies, and people with whom you interact while you reside in Minnesota. This allows you to keep your real address inaccessible from the person you fear. The Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State forwards all of your mail to you from the assigned post office box. Applying to Safe at Home requires the assistance of a professional victim advocate.
Local election officials send teams of election judges (poll workers) to nursing homes and hospitals during the 20 days before the election. They hand out ballots to eligible residents of the facility and give help if needed.
The election judges provide ballots only to voters who live in the city or town where the hospital is located. If you live in a different town, you will need to apply for an absentee ballot on your own. In addition, you may be eligible to have someone pick up and deliver a ballot to you. This is called 'agent delivery.' Read more about agent delivery
As long as a judge did not restrict your right to vote through court order, you have the right to vote when:
No one else can make this decision on your behalf, including a spouse, children, attorneys, caregivers, doctors or nurses.
Your criminal record does not affect your right to vote in Minnesota unless you are currently serving a felony conviction sentence, including probation, parole or supervised release.
You can vote after you finish all parts of your sentence, including any probation, parole, or supervised release.
As soon as you finish (once you are ‘off-paper’), you can vote. You will need to register to vote. It is best to register before Election Day, but it is not required.
Sometimes it is not clear whether a felony charge results in a felony conviction. If you are unsure, you may want to seek legal advice from an attorney.
Serving in the military or living abroad? Have an absentee ballot sent to you wherever you are in the world! Click here to learn more.
To vote in Minnesota, you must be a U.S. citizen, at least 18 years old on Election Day, and a resident of Minnesota for at least 20 days. If you had a felony conviction, you can vote if you have finished all parts of your sentence, including probation or parole.
Paying out-of-state tuition or having a driver's license from another state does not necessarily mean you can't vote in Minnesota.
You should register to vote from the address you currently consider home. For many students, this is likely a school address or a parent’s house. If you still go back to visit but no longer consider it your home, then you should register to vote where you live at school.
If you moved to Minnesota from another state and currently consider Minnesota your home, you can vote here even if you pay out-of-state tuition or have a driver’s license from another state.
If you do not consider your school address to be your home, you can apply to vote by mail with an absentee ballot. Minnesota voters can apply online; otherwise, visit your home state’s election website.
You must be registered to vote at your current address. It is best to register before Election Day, but it is not required. To register on Election Day, you must show proof of your name and current address.
See the candidates and questions that will be on your ballot.
Find out where you vote. Most polling places are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
If your voter registration is current and active, you do not need to bring identification. This means you were successfully registered at least 21 days before Election Day and you have not moved or changed names since then.
If you need to register or update your registration, or you have not voted in four years or more, you will need to show proof of residence before you vote.
Have an absentee ballot emailed to you wherever you are in the world. Learn how.