Upcoming Election dates & registration deadlines
Arkansas Voting Information
- Absentee Ballot Process
- Campaign Finance Information
- Candidate and Ballot Measure Information
- Early Voting
- Election Dates
- Eligibility Requirements
- ID Needed for Voter Registration
- ID Needed for Voting?
- Overseas and Military Voters
- Poll Worker Information
- Polling Place Hours
- Polling Place Locator
- Provisional Voting
- Provisions for Voters with Disabilities
- Registration Deadline
- Time Off To Vote
- Verify Voter Registration
- Voting Machines
Absentee Ballot Process
To be qualified to vote an absentee ballot, you must meet one of the following criteria:
- You will be unavoidably absent from your polling site on Election Day (the law does not require you to give a reason)
- You will be unable to attend your polling site on election day due to illness or physical disability
- You are a member of the U.S. armed forces, merchant marines or the spouse or a dependent family member
- A U.S. citizen domiciled in Arkansas but temporarily living outside the territorial limits of the United States
You can obtain an application for an absentee voting ballot from your county clerk who may mail or fax you an application, or you can fill out an absentee ballot request form here. You may also request an application in person at your county clerk's office. On the application, there is a reference to a designated bearer. This is anyone chosen by you to pick up or deliver your ballot. On the application, there is a reference to an agent and an authorized agent. This means if you are a hospital patient or a resident in a long-term care facility, then an administrator of the facility may assist you in the absentee voting process. This person must file an affidavit with the local county clerk to become your authorized agent.
The deadline to submit your absentee ballot is dependent upon on your method for submitting the application back to the county clerk:
- In person by you: close of business the day before the election
- By designated bearer: close of business the day before the election
- By mail or by fax: 7 days before the election
- By authorized agent: 1:30 pm on Election Day
Note: The law does not prohibit county clerks from mailing absentee ballot applications during the seven days prior to an election. However, if you receive the application during that window, you or your chosen bearer must deliver it personally to the county clerk. You can receive your application for absentee ballot by picking it up in person, receiving it by mail, or by allowing a bearer to pick it up (an administrator, authorized agent or designated bearer.) The law only specifies a time window for designated bearers. They may pick up your ballot no earlier than 15 days before a preferential or general election and no earlier than 7 days before a runoff. You should pick up your ballot based on the ability to deliver it back to the county clerk on time. Again, to submit your ballot the deadline depends on your method of delivery:
- In person by you: close of business the day before the election
- By mail: by 7:30 p.m. on Election Day
- By designated bearer: 7:30 p.m. on Election Day
- By authorized agent: 7:30 p.m. on Election Day
Separate applications for absentee ballots are needed for every election. You must submit a new application for each election cycle. If you reside outside your county of registration (such as students or military voters,) are disabled or reside in a care facility, you will receive applications through the next two regularly scheduled general elections for federal office, including any runoff elections which may occur as a result of the outcome of the general election. You must indicate this preference on the application itself.
Voter ID Needed for Absentee Voting:
If you are voting absentee, you must provide a copy of one of the following forms of ID:
- Valid photo ID (drivers license, passport)
- Utility Bill
- Bank Statement
- Government check
- Other government document that shows your name and address
You do not need to provide ID when voting absentee if you are:
- A uniformed service member or merchange marine on active duty who is absent from the county because of active duty or service
- The spouse or dependent of a uniformed service member or merchange marine, who is away from the county due to the active duty or service of the uniformed service member or merchant marine
- Residents of a long-term care or residential care facility. These voters must provide a letter or other document from the facility's administrator that the voter is a resident of the facility
Overseas citizens and U.S. military personnel can find information on how to register to vote and request an absentee ballot at the Overseas Vote Foundation.
Campaign Finance Information
Candidate and Ballot Measure Information
Depending on the type of election being conducted, you may early vote during the 7 or 15 days prior to Election Day. For more information check your state's resource.
To be eligible to vote in Arkansas you must be:
- A U.S. citizen
- An Arkansas resident
- Age 18 before or on Election Day
- Not presently adjudged mentally incompetent by a court of competent jurisdiction
- Not convicted of a felony without your sentence having been discharged or pardoned
- Not claiming the right to vote in another county or state
ID Needed for Voter Registration
If you are registering to vote by mail, you must provide either your driver's license number or the last four digits of your Social Security number on your Arkansas voter registration application. If you do not have any of these items, you may be required to vote on a provisional ballot when you vote for the first time unless you submit a photocopy of one of the following with your mail-in application or at the time of voting:
- A current and valid photo ID
- A copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check or paycheck that shows your name and address
- Another government document that shows your name and address
ID Needed for Voting?
Photo IDs are not required to cast your ballot.
If you are a first time voter who registered by mail and did not submit a copy of the required ID with the applications, you must show one of the following before casting your ballot:
- Valid Arkansas Driver's License or other photo ID
- Copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck or other government document that shows your name and address
If you do not show one of these forms of ID you may vote a Provisional Ballot.
Overseas and Military Voters
You are a Military or Overseas voter if you are in uniformed services, living overseas OR a spouse or dependent of a uniformed services voter. To get registered and vote, you can utilize Overseas Vote Foundation.
If you have additional questions about elections and voting overseas you can use our state specific elections official directory or contact the Overseas Vote Foundation.
Poll Worker Information
In order to be a poll worker in Arkansas:
- You must be a qualified elector in Arkansas
- Must be able to read and write English
- You must be a resident of the precinct in which you serve
- Must not have been found guilty or pled guilty to the violation of any election law in Arkansas
- Must not be a paid employee of any political party
- Must not be a paid employee of any person running for any office on the county's ballot
- Must not be a candidate for any office to be filled at an election while serving as a poll worker
- Must not be related or married to any candidate running for office in the current election
- You must complete the training
To sign up, contact your local board of elections.
Polling Place Hours
The polls will be open from 7:30 am to 7:30 pm on Election Day. When the polls close, if you are in line, you will be permitted to vote.
Polling Place Locator
Provisional ballots are counted between 2-15 days after the election.
If your name is not on the precinct voter registration list, or you do not show a valid photo ID, the election official shall permit you to vote only under the following conditions:
- You identify yourself by stating your name, date of birth and that you are verified by the county clerk as a registered voter within the county
- You affirm your current residence and the election official verifies with the county clerk that your residence is within the precinct
- You complete an updated voter registration application form
- You sign the precinct voter registration list
If you are not listed on the precinct voter registration list and the election official is unable to verify your registration with the county clerk and you contend that you are eligible to vote, then you may vote a challenged ballot which shall only be counted upon verification of your registration status by the county board of election commissioners prior to certification of the election.
If your ballot is challenged, the election officials in the election precinct will make and retain a list of the names of all persons who are challenged and the procedure shall be as follows:
- You will separate your marked ballot and ballot stub
- You will place the challenged ballot in a single challenged ballot envelope and seal the envelope
- You will place the ballot stub and the sealed challenged ballot envelope and the challenge form in a challenged voter envelope
- The ballots of all challenged persons shall be preserved, secured, and separated from the remaining ballots to the end that the right of any person to vote may be determined later by the county board of election commissioners
- The county board shall, prior to certification of the results of the election, determine whether the challenged ballots are valid
The election official will provide the voter with written instructions on how to determine whether the provisional vote was counted and,if not, the reason the vote was not counted. (Inmost cases, the election commission will mail a notice to the voter.)
If you have to cast a Provisional Ballot because your registration status could not be confirmed:
- If your name is not included on the precinct voter registration list and if the election official at the poll cannot verify the voter's status as a registered voter in the county, that voter is entitled to cast a Provisional Ballot if he or she contends to be a registered voter in the precinct in which he or she desires to vote.
- The election official will ask you to provide a current, valid photo ID or a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check,paycheck or other government document that shows the name and address of the voter. If you fail to provide this ID, the election official will note it on the precinct voter list.
- The election official will write your name and address on the list of provisional voters.
- The election official will provide a Voter Affirmation form on which you affirm that you are a registered voter in the precinct and are eligible to vote in the election.
- When the affirmation is completed, the election official will provide the proper ballot to you.
- You may then mark the ballot.
- Then you should place the marked ballot into the Provisional Ballot envelope and seal it.
- Then you should then place the Voter Affirmation (if the affirmation is a separate piece of paper and not printed on the envelope) in the Provisional Voter envelope.
- The election official shall provide you with written instructions on how to determine whether or not the provisional vote was counted, and, if not, the reason the vote was not counted. (In most cases, the election commission will mail a notice to the voter.)
Provisions for Voters with Disabilities
If you are at the polling site and find that you are unable to stand in line for extended period of time due to physical, sensory or other disabilities, you can inform an election official and they will put you at the head of the line of any voters. If you are unable to mark your ballot, you may be assisted by two election officials or by any person selected by you, who will mark the ballot in accordance with your voting wishes. If you are a qualified elector and you tell the election official at the voting precinct that you are unable to read the ballot, the election official have the entire ballot read to you, unless you instruct otherwise. The election official shall then assist you without comment or interpretation in marking the ballot. If you designate a person to assist, the election official shall allow that person to assist you, and the person designated shall read the entire ballot to you, unless you instruct otherwise, and then assist you without comment or interpretation in marking the ballot.
For more information, you can utilize the American Association of People With Disabilities (AAPD) resource.
To qualify to vote in the election, you must apply to register to vote 30 days before the election. If you mail the form, it must be postmarked by that date. You may also present it to a voter registration agency representative or your county clerk, by that date. If you completed your application at a voter registration drive, the organizers must submit it to the county clerk or secretary of state's office within 21 days of the date on the application or no later than 30 days prior to the election.
If you submit your application close to an election registration deadline, you are strongly advised to follow up on your registration status with your county clerk before Election Day. If an election deadline is approaching, you can ensure your eligibility by applying in person with your county clerk. If you have not received verification from your county clerk, be sure to confirm your registration before Election Day.
You can register to vote at any of the following places:
- County clerk's office in your home county
- State revenue Office
- Driver services (pick up a paper form or ask for your information to be transmitted electronically)
- Public library or Arkansas state library
- Public assistance agency
- Disability agency
- Military recruitment office
Time Off To Vote
Employer shall schedule sufficient time on election days so that employees may vote. This time varies by location.
Verify Voter Registration
To verify your voter registration status, please use your state's voter verification tool here.
The voting systems used in Arkansas are optical scan and DRE.
Optical Scan: With this system, you will receive a card or sheet of paper, which you take over to a private table or booth. The card has the names of the various candidates and ballot measures printed on it. With a pen or pencil you fill in a little box or circle or the space between two arrows. When you are finished filling out all the cards, you may bring the cards over to a ballot box, where poll workers will show you how to put the cards in the box. Or in some places, you may feed the completed cards or papers into a computer device that checks your card or paper right there at the polling place to make sure you have voted the way you want to and counts the votes.
Direct Recording Electronic (DRE): This is the newest kind of system in use in the U.S. All the information about who and what you are voting for is on an electronic screen like a TV or computer screen.
There are many variations of DREs because lots of companies are inventing new ones, and many cities, counties and states are trying them out. Usually, after you have signed in, the poll workers will give you a card that you slide into a device to start your voting session.
Some of these devices will show all of the candidates and ballot choices on one big screen. Often, with these big screen devices you push a button next to the name of the candidate you want to vote for (or yes or no on a ballot measure). On other DREs, the screen is set up to show pages. On each screen or page, there will probably be one thing to vote on. For example, on one screen or page, you might vote for president. Then you might move to the next page to vote for senator. Often these small-screen devices have a touch screen, where you touch the screen next to the name of the person you want to vote for. Other devices have a key pad. And some have a keyboard, so you can write in the name of someone you want to vote for.
You let the system know you are finished voting by pushing a button, touching the screen or entering something on a keypad.
iVotronic Touch Screen: With system the voter uses a touch screen to place their votes. This system prevents voters from casting two votes in a single race and alerts the voter of races with no votes cast. It includes a paper receipt that remains in the machine but allows voters to see their individual votes to verify the machine records them correctly.
You can learn more about voting systems by checking out the Elections Assistance Commission's (EAC) resource.
Personalized voting information
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