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South Dakota

Upcoming Election Dates & Registration Deadlines

Some elections in this list are local and do not apply for all South Dakota 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

By Mail
Monday, October 21, 2024
In Person
Monday, October 21, 2024
There are no additional election dates scheduled at this time.

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Register to vote in South Dakota

South Dakota Voting Information

Absentee Ballot Process

Absentee voting is available and no excuse is required. The last day to request an absentee ballot is 1 days before the election. You can return your absentee ballot request form through the mail or in person. Voted ballots must be received by Election Day in order to be counted. You can sign up to track your absentee ballot on your Secretary of State website. Absentee ballots begin being counted on Election Day. Contact your local elections office for more information.

Any registered voter may vote by absentee ballot. You must request an absentee ballot application from your County Election Official or fill out an absentee ballot request here. You will then be sent a paper absentee ballot to vote.

The County Election Official must receive your application no later than 5pm the day before the election.

If you are confined because of sickness or disability, you may apply in writing and obtain an absentee ballot by authorized messenger. The authorized messenger delivers the ballot from the County Election Official to the qualified voter and then delivers the marked ballot to the County Election Official. Any application for a ballot by authorized messenger must be received before 3pm the day of the election.

Those who requested an absentee ballot but end up voting in person may do so without surrendering their absentee ballot. For specifics contact your local county clerk.

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.

Request your Ballot
Campaign Finance Information

For information on federal campaign contributions, please visit Open Secrets.

For information on state campaign contributions, please visit your state's resource.

Candidate and Ballot Measure Information

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


Drop Boxes

No drop boxes are available. Voters can return their voted ballot to their county election official.

Early Voting

South Dakota doesn’t have early in-person voting, but you can cast an absentee ballot at the county auditor’s office from September 20th through November 4th.

Early Voting begins 46 days before the election (in-person absentee voting) and ends the day before Election Day.

Election Dates

Your next election day can be found here

Contact your local Board of Elections for more information.

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible to vote you must be:

  • A U.S. citizen
  • A resident in South Dakota (To be a resident means the place in which you have a fixed habitation and whenever you are absent intend to return to)
  • At least 18 years old on or before the election
  • Not currently serving a sentence for a felony conviction which included imprisonment, served or suspended, in an adult penitentiary system
  • Not judged mentally incompetent by a court of law

Incarcerated Voters & Returning Citizens: 

In South Dakota, you lose your right to vote if you are convicted of a felony. Your right to vote is automatically restored once you complete your full sentence, including any relevant term of incarceration, probation, parole, and payment of fines and fees. Pretrial detention and misdemeanors do not restrict your voting rights in South Dakota.  

Voters without traditional residence: 

If you live in a rural area and do not have a street address; if your residence address is a PO Box, rural box, or general delivery; or if you have no address, please describe the physical location of your residence in writing in line 4a of your voter registration form, which may include writing the names of the streets or intersections nearest to where you live and listing any landmarks (e.g., schools, churches, stores) near where you live. If you do not receive mail at your residential address, 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 you. 

ID Needed for Voter Registration

You are required to show your state driver's license or provide the last 4 digits of your Social Security number when registering to vote.

ID Needed for Voting

You must show an ID at the polls when you go to vote.

Acceptable forms of ID include:

  • A South Dakota driver's license or non-driver ID card
  • A passport or an identification card, including a picture, issued by an agency of the U.S. government
  • A tribal identification card, including a picture
  • US Government photo ID
  • US Armed Forces ID
  • Student photo ID from a South Dakota high school
  • A current ID that includes a picture, issued by an accredited institution of higher education, including a university, college, or technical school, located within South Dakota

If you do not have a photo ID, you can sign a personal ID affidavit.

Voters can call or text 844-338-8743 at any time 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 7-17 days after the election.

Official election results will be uploaded on South Dakota’s Secretary of State 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 make sure we have safe, fair, and efficient elections for all. Become a poll worker today!

In order to be a poll worker in South Dakota, you must:

  • Be registered to vote in South Dakota
  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • Be a resident of the county and precinct 15 days prior to the election
  • Complete required training

You will be entitled to compensation

To sign up, contact your local board of elections.

Polling Place Hours

Polls will be open from 7:00 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

South Dakota is a “partially closed” primary state. Each party has the ability to choose whether to allow unaffiliated voters or voters not registered with their party to participate in their primary. This decision is made before the election cycle begins.

In a primary election if a candidate running for US Senate, US House, or Governor does not with the majority of the votes (50%+1) there will be a primary runoff election scheduled for a few weeks after the primary election date. The runoff election will have the top two candidates with the most votes to ensure that one of them receives the majority of the voters.

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

Provisional Voting

If you are not authorized to vote, are successfully challenged, or are otherwise denied the ability to vote and you maintain that you are currently registered to vote in that precinct, you may cast a ballot which shall be called a provisional ballot.

You must complete an affirmation for a provisional ballot. Provisional Ballots are counted 7-17 days after the election.

You will receive notification of whether your provisional ballot was counted or not and if not, an explanation of why it was not counted. By voting a provisional ballot, your vote may not be secret if you are the only one voting on a provisional ballot in that precinct.

Provisions for Voters with Disabilities

If you cannot mark a ballot because you have a physical disability or cannot read, you may ask any person to help you vote.

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

Registration Deadline

Not registered? Use our registration tool to fill out your application!

The deadline for registration is 15 days before any election. Your application must be received by the auditor by this deadline if you are to vote in the next election.


Time Off To Vote

Employees are entitled to paid leave on Election Day between the time the polls open and when they close, unless the person has two consecutive hours during the time the polls are open in which he or she can vote before or after work.

Verify Voter Registration

To verify your registration status

click here!
Voting Machines

The voting systems used in South Dakota are optical scan and paper ballots.

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.

Paper Ballots: Paper ballots are one of the oldest ways of voting in America. They are still used in a few places on Election Day. When you come to the polling place, you will get a paper ballot from the poll worker. You take it to the voting booth, and use a pen or pencil to mark a box next to your candidate and issue choices. You then drop the marked ballot into a sealed ballot box.

You can learn more about voting systems by checking out the Elections Assistance Commission's (EAC)

Personalized voting information

  • See What's On Your Ballot
  • Check Your Voter Registration
  • Find Your Polling Place
  • Discover Upcoming Debates and Forum in Your Area

Get Started

South Dakota Department of State

Secretary of State

500 East Capitol Ave. St 204

Pierre 57501-5070

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LWV of South Dakota

LWV volunteers work year-round to register new voters, host community forums and debates, and provide voters with election information they need.

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