May Register To Vote
Before you can
vote in Iowa, you must be registered. To register to vote
in Iowa, you must:
- be a citizen
of the United States
- be a resident
- be at least
17 - 1/2 years old
(you must be 18 to vote)
- not have been
convicted of a felony
(unless your rights have been restored)
- not currently
be judged "mentally incompetent" by a court
- give up your
right to vote in any other place
If you do not
meet all these qualifications, you should not register to
to Register in Person
- Office of
the County Auditor
- Driver's license
- Public assistance
- State offices
serving people with disabilities
- Some city
clerks and school board secretaries can register voters.
Contact your county auditor for more information.
To Get Registration Forms
forms may be distributed by anyone who wants to register
others to vote. Forms are available from many sources, including:
- Office of
the County Auditor
- Office of
the Iowa Secretary of State: in person, by mail, or website:
(Voter Registration Form)
- Most US West
Direct telephone books
- Most McLeod
USA telephone books
- Iowa Income
Tax Booklets - even numbered years
- Back of this
Out The Registration Form
fill out the form
You may fill out your own form, or you may ask someone else
to do it for you. You have the right to fill out the form
You must sign
the form yourself. People with disabilities may have someone
else sign the form in the presence of the disabled person,
or they may use a rubber stamp.
of registration information
Fill out the entire form every time, even if you are making
only one small change. If you are not sure if you are registered
to vote, you may submit a registration form to be sure that
everything on your registration is up to date.
for registering others
Groups may pay people to help others register to vote. Payment
can be made only for a person's time. It is a crime to pay
someone for the number of registration forms or the number
of registrations by political party.
On the top
half (or front) of the form:
- Date of birth
- Sex (female
- Full name
- Address where
- Mailing address,
if different from where you live
and the current date
On the bottom
(or back) of the form:
of location of residence (only if the person has no street
- Previous voter
- Social security
party affiliation - this is required information only
to vote in a primary election.*
- School district
* It is illegal
to attempt to influence the applicant's choice of party
to Send Completed Forms
voter registration forms to the appropriate county auditor
no later than Friday of the week the form was completed.
A county auditor's address list is included in this guide
beginning on page 11.
You can take
completed voter registration forms to the county auditor's
office for yourself or others. If you have collected voter
registration forms from other people, do not wait to send
them in because you may be risking someone else's right
forms can be folded, sealed and mailed without an envelope.
Follow the instructions on the form.
To Do if You Move
If you move to
a different county or state, your registration cannot be
transferred. You must register to vote again. Contact the
Secretary of State's office or your county auditor for more
If you move within
the county where you are registered to vote, you can write
to the county auditor to report your change of address.
No special form is required, but be sure to include the
following information, your full name, date of birth, former
address, and your new address. Your social security number
or voter identification number is not required, but is helpful.
You may also report a change of address by filling out a
new voter registration form. Please fill out the change
of address section of the form.
If you have not
moved out of the county where you are registered to vote,
you may report a change of address at the polls on election
day. Go to the polling place for the precinct where you
live now. You will be asked to show identification.
You need to register again only if you move to a different
county. However, your registration will be canceled if you
are convicted of a felony or judged to be mentally incompetent.
Expect a Receipt
Within two weeks after you register you should get a receipt.
If you do not get a receipt, call your county auditor.
For most elections,
the last day to register to vote is 11 days before the date
of the election. For statewide primary and general elections,
the deadline is 10 days before the election. There is an
election calendar on page 18.