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Upcoming Election Dates & Registration Deadlines

Some elections in this list are local and do not apply for all Illinois voters. Please click the “View all” button below to view all election dates in your state.

Next Election: General
Tuesday, November 5, 2024

Registration Deadlines

Sunday, October 20, 2024
By Mail
Tuesday, October 8, 2024
In Person
Tuesday, November 5, 2024
There are no additional election dates scheduled at this time.

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Illinois Voting Information

Absentee Ballot Process

Absentee voting is available and no excuse is required. The last day to request an absentee ballot by mail is 5 days before the election. Voted ballots must be postmarked by Election Day and received within two weeks in order to be counted. You can return your absentee ballot request form through the mail, a secure drop box, or in person.  Absentee ballots begin being counted on Election Day. Contact your local elections office for more information.

Requesting and Returning your Absentee Ballot: 

You do not need an excuse to vote absentee in Illinois. You can request an absentee ballot:

  • In person - no more than 90 days but before 1 day before the election
  • By mail inside the US - no more than 90 days or less than 5 days before the election
  • By mail outside the US - no less than 30 days before the election (to receive the full ballot), or less than 30 days but no more than 10 days before the election to receive the Federal Ballot only

Upon receipt, complete the application. Make certain to include your name, home address, address where you want the ballot to be mailed, and please remember to sign the application.

After completing the application, either mail it or hand-deliver it to your election authority. If you return the application in person or complete the application in the election authority's office, you may immediately vote with your absentee ballot in the election authority's office. If you mail the application and it is properly completed, the election authority will mail your absentee ballot to you.

After receiving your ballot, VOTE THE BALLOT IN SECRET. Insert the ballot into the envelope provided, seal it, complete and sign the certification on the back and PERSONALLY return it or mail it. The absentee voter may authorize, in writing, that a spouse, parent, child, brother, sister, or licensed motor carrier, should deliver the completed absentee ballot to the election authority in sufficient time to be delivered to the polling place on Election Day. Voted ballots must be postmarked by Election Day and received within two weeks in order to be counted.

Permanent Vote-by-Mail List:

If you are a registered voter in Illinois, you may apply to be added to a permanent vote-by-mail list. A notice of this new option will be sent to all qualified voters before the next general election along with the application to opt-in. Voters will still have the option to vote-by-mail for a single election. The permanent vote-by-mail application will be available online closer to the next election here

Those who requested an absentee ballot but end up voting in person:

To do this, voters must bring their mailed ballot to the election site and turn it in to the election judge. If they do not have their mailed ballot with them, they will only be able to vote using a provisional ballot.

Overseas citizens and U.S. military personnel can find information on how to register to vote and request an absentee ballot from the Overseas Vote Foundation.

Request your Ballot
Campaign Finance Information

For information on federal campaign contributions, please visit Open Secrets. For state-specific information, click here


Candidate and Ballot Measure Information

Information on local, state and federal candidates and ballot measures may be available here.


Drop Boxes

Vote-by-mail drop boxes will be installed in some locations. Check your State Board of Elections website to see if there is a drop box in your jurisdiction.  

Early Voting

Early voting for the November 5, 2024 general election begins September 26th and ends November 4th.

Early voting is available to all voters beginning 40 days before an election and ends the day before the election. Locations and hours for early voting are determined by each election authority.

For more information about early voting locations, check our your state's resource.


Election Dates

The next election date can be found here

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible to vote, you must be:

  • A US citizen
  • At least 18 years of age by Election Day
    • 17-year-olds may vote in a General Primary if they will be 18 by the following General Election
    • 16-year-olds may pre-register to vote so they may start voting as soon as they turn 18
  • Have been a resident of the precinct at least 30 days prior to Election Day
  • Not be serving a sentence of confinement in any penal institution as a result of any conviction
  • Not be registered to vote elsewhere

Incarcerated Voters & Returning Citizens: 

In Illinois, you only lose your right to vote if you are currently incarcerated for a misdemeanor or felony conviction. If you lost your voting rights because of a conviction, you could register to vote immediately after release. Your voting rights are not restricted by pretrial detention, misdemeanors, probation, or parole. 

Voters without traditional residence: 

In Illinois, voters must provide a residence address for voter registration purposes. When providing the residence address, post office boxes should not be used. Individuals without a permanent or fixed home address may draw a map in the designated box on their voter registration form to indicate the exact location of where they stay. They should list the name of the subdivision; cross streets; roads; landmarks; mileage and/or neighbors’ names. 

If the individual does not receive postal service at their residence address, they must provide a separate mailing address, including the number, street, city, state, and zip code. The mailing address on their registration form can be a P.O. box, local shelter, advocacy organization, outreach center, or the home of someone who will accept mail for them. 

ID Needed for Voter Registration

Two forms of identification are required when registering to vote, one of which must show your current residential address.

If you register by mail, sufficient proof of identity is fulfilled by submission of your driver's license number or state identification card number.

If you don't have either of those, verification by one of the following will be required:

  • the last 4 digits of your Social Security Number
  • a copy of a current and valid photo ID
  • a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other governmental document that shows your name and address

You may also demonstrate sufficient proof of identity by submission of a photo ID issued by a college or university along with either a copy of the applicant's contract or lease for a residence or a postmarked mail delivered to the applicant at his or her current address.

If you register by mail, you must vote in person the first time you vote unless you submit your driver license number or state ID number, the last four digits of your social security number or one of the forms of ID listed above.

ID Needed for Voting

Identification is not required to vote at the polls, although you will be required to verify your signature. If you registered to vote-by-mail and did not submit any ID with the registration, you must show a form of ID to vote.

Acceptable forms are:

  • A current and valid photo ID
  • Utility bill
  • Bank statement
  • Government check
  • Paycheck
  • Lease or contract for residence
  • Student ID and mail addressed to voter's residence
  • Government document

All forms of the IDs above must show your name and address. If you do not show any ID types, you will be asked to vote a Provisional Ballot.

A government-issued photo ID is not required to vote during Early Voting as long as your registration is accurate and up to date. 

Voters can call or text 844-338-8743 anytime to reach VoteRiders Voter ID Helpline.

Official Results

Official results are never available on Election Day. Election officials are working around the clock to count an unprecedented number of ballots, and it’s essential that they take the time to make sure every vote is counted.

Absentee ballots begin being counted on Election Day. Provisional ballots are counted 14 days after the election.

Official election results will be uploaded on the Illinois Board of Elections website as they become available. 


Official Results
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

You can ensure we have safe, fair, and efficient elections. Become a poll worker today!

To be a poll worker in Illinois:

  • You must be registered to vote in Illinois
  • You must be at least 18 years of age
  • Political affiliation required
  • Term requirement of 2 years
  • You will be entitled to compensation
  • You must be a resident of the precinct for the 30 days before the election
  • You must complete the required training
  • Students with citizenship who are juniors or seniors in good standing enrolled in a public or private secondary school; may work with written permission from a parent or guardian and school principal and must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0

To sign up, contact your local board of elections.

Polling Place Hours

The polls are open from 6:00 am to 7:00 pm.

Polling Place Locator

You can find your polling place by utilizing your state resource.

If you have further questions on your polling place location, please contact your county clerk.

Primary Election Process

Illinois is a “partially open” primary state. This allows voters to cross party lines, however, they must first publicly declare their ballot choice. Ballot selection may also be regarded as a form of registration with the selected party. 

If you have any questions about your state’s primary election, please contact your local election officials.

Provisional Voting

You may vote a provisional ballot if you meet specific conditions. Provisional ballots are counted 14 days after an election. To find out if your vote was counted, please use your state's provisional ballot tool.

An election judge will issue you a provisional ballot at your polling place if:

  • Your name does not appear on the official list of eligible voters in that precinct
  • Your voting status has been challenged and a majority of the judges uphold the challenge
  • You did not provide ID when registering by mail and still don't provide ID on Election Day
  • A court order extends the time for closing the polls and you vote during this extended time period
  • Your name appears on the list of voters who voted during early voting
  • You admit to receiving a vote by mail ballot but did not return the un-voted ballot to the election authority
  • You tried to register on Election Day but failed to provide the necessary documentation

By law, you must vote in your assigned precinct for all votes on your provisional ballot to count.



Provisions for Voters with Disabilities

The Help America Vote Act requires that election authorities have voting equipment for voters with disabilities to vote privately and independently, and Illinois is no exception. Additionally, there are options for a seated voting booth, voting assistance from a friend, relative, or two election judges (one from each party), voting by mail, and curbside voting.

Language assistance is also available where required under amendments to the Federal Voting Act of 1992.

For more information on the provisions available for disabled voters, please contact your local election authority.

For more information, you can utilize the American Association of People With Disabilities (AAPD) resource.

Registration Deadline

Registration is open year-round except:

  • During the 27-day period just prior to an election, or 16 days before the election for online registration
  • During the 2-days after each election (1 day after in Chicago)

Voters may now register to vote either by accessing the Online Voter Application, or through the Illinois State Board of Elections website.

Although the regular voter registration period closes 28 days before the election, a grace period registration extends that deadline from the 27th day before an election through Election Day in person at designated sites. Check with your local election authority to determine the locations and hours available in your area. 

Under federal law, citizens may apply to register to vote by mailing in a voter registration application. The applications are available at some public and private facilities where you live.

When you register by mail, your form must be postmarked before the close of registration. Please note that if you register by mail, with the exception of those disabled or in the military, you must vote in person at the polling place or by in-person absentee voting the first time you vote unless you provide sufficient identification in that registration.


Time Off To Vote

Every employee is entitled, after giving notice, to two hours off work, provided that the employee's working hours begin less than 2 hours after the opening of the polls and end less than 2 hours before the closing of the polls. The law does not specify whether time off is paid.

Verify Voter Registration

To verify your voter registration status

click here!
Vote by Mail

If you are a registered voter in Illinois, you may apply to be added to a permanent vote-by-mail list. If your application for permanent vote-by-mail status is accepted you will:

  • Receive an official vote by mail ballot for all subsequent elections
  • Remain on the permanent vote by mail list until you provide a written request to be removed or if there are any changes to your voter registration status

A notice of this new option will be sent to all qualified voters before the next general election along with the application to opt-in. Voters will still have the option to vote-by-mail for a single election. The permanent vote-by-mail application will be available online closer to the next election here

Voting Machines

The voting systems used in Illinois are optical scan and DRE.

To find out what voting machine is used in your county, please visit your state's resource.

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. 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.

You can learn more about voting systems by checking out the Elections Assistance Commission's (EAC) resource or through Verified Voting.

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