Upcoming Election Dates & Registration Deadlines
Some elections in this list are local and do not apply for all Wisconsin voters. Please click the “View all” button below to view all election dates in your state.
Wisconsin 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
Absentee voting is available and no excuse is required. The last day to request an absentee ballot is 5 days before the election (October 29, 2020). Voted ballots must be received by 8pm on Election Day in order to be counted.
Who Can Request an Absentee Ballot?
Any qualified elector who registers to vote in Wisconsin is eligible to request an absentee ballot.
How to Request an Absentee Ballot
Online. You may request an absentee ballot online by visiting myvote.wi.gov and clicking “Vote Absentee”. This request must be made no later than 5pm on the Thursday before the election.
By Mail. Download the application, complete the form and mail it to your municipal clerk's office. The application must be received no later than 5pm on the Thursday before the election.
In Person. You may vote early in person – at the clerk’s office or another site designated by the clerk. Dates and hours for early voting may vary, though it can begin no earlier than 14 days before the election and ends no later than the Sunday before the election. Please contact your municipal clerk for absentee voting hours.
If you have not previously provided a copy of your photo ID, photo ID must accompany your application.
Military and permanent overseas voters do not need to provide a photo ID with their request.
Deadline for Returning Your Absentee Ballot
Your complete absentee ballot must be delivered no later than 8pm on Election Day. The US Postal Service recommends you mail your absentee ballot one week before Election Day to ensure it arrives in time. You may hand-deliver you absentee ballot to your polling place by 8pm on Election Day.
Permanent Absentee Ballot
Voters who are indefinitely confined, meaning they have a difficult time getting to the polls due to age, illness, infirmity, or disability, may request that a ballot be automatically sent to them for each election. Indefinitely confined voters do not need to provide a photo ID with their absentee ballot request. Voters on the permanent absentee ballot list must vote in each election or they will be dropped from the absentee ballot rolls.
What if you are in the hospital?
Each hospitalized voter can request a ballot (in writing), and the voter may appoint an agent to pick up the ballot from the hospitalized voter’s clerk’s office.If you know you will be in the hospital, request a regular absentee ballot in advance.
Campaign Finance Information
Candidate and Ballot Measure Information
Early Voting for the Tuesday, November 3, 2020 General Election begins on October 20th and ends on November 1st.
Early voting is available in the form of in-person absentee voting. Each city, village and town is responsible for setting the dates and hours of in-person absentee voting for their municipality, though it can begin no earlier than 14 days before the election and ends no later than the Sunday before the election. To find the dates and hours for in-person absentee voting where you live, contact your municipal clerk.
To be eligible to vote you must be:
- A U.S. citizen
- 18 years or older on Election Day
- A resident of Wisconsin at least 28 days before the election
- Registered to vote or are registering on Election Day
You are ineligible to vote in Wisconsin if you:
- Have already voted in the election
- Are currently serving any portion of a felony sentence, including probation or supervision
- Have been ruled incapable of voting by a judge
- Have made or become interested, directly or indirectly, in any bet or wager depending upon the result of the election
More information about Ex Felon and Incarcerated Voters can be found here.
You will have to prove residency by providing adequate identification. See "ID Needed for Voter Registration" below for more information.
ID Needed for Voter Registration
To register to vote, you must show your state department of transportation issued driver's license or ID card number. If you have not been issued a state driver's license or ID, you must provide the last 4 digits of your Social Security number. Or, you may indicate that you have not been issued a state driver's license, ID, or Social Security number. Your registration cannot be processed until you provide this information.
You can now register to vote online! You will need a WI driver's license or ID in order to complete the online registration. If you do not have either form of ID you can either mail the registration papers or register to vote in person.
You must provide proof of residence in order to establish your current address. The following are acceptable proof of residence (must contain your current and complete name, a current and complete residential address, including a numbered street address, and the name of a municipality):
- A current and valid Wisconsin driver's license
- A current and valid Wisconsin ID card
- Any other official identification card or license issued by a Wisconsin governmental body or unit
- Any ID card issued by an employer in the normal course of business and bearing a photo of the card holder, but not including a business card
- A real estate tax bill or receipt for the current year or the year preceding the date of the election
- A residential lease that is effective on day of registration (not valid for first time voters registering by mail)
- A university, college or technical institute fee statement within the last 9 months with a student ID
- A utility bill (gas, electric or telephone service) received within the past 90 days
- Bank or credit card statement
- Paycheck or paystub
- A check or other document issued by a unit of government
- An intake document from a residential care facility such as a nursing home or assisted living facility
- A letter on public or private social service agency letterhead identifying a homeless voter and describing the individual's residence for voting purposes
More proof of residence examples can be found here.
ID Needed for Voting?
Photo ID is required before you may vote.
The following types of photo ID are acceptable and may be unexpired or expired after the date of the most recent general election:
- A Wisconsin DOT issued drivers license, even if driving privileges are revoked or suspended, with or without a star in the right-hand corner
- A Wisconsin DOT issued ID card, with or without a star in the right-hand corner
- A Wisconsin DOT-issued ID card or drivers license without a photo issued under the religious exemption
- Military ID card issued by a US uniformed service
- US Passport (booklet or card)
- A photo ID card issued by a Wisconsin accredited university or college that contains date of issuance, signature of student and an expiration date no later than two years after date of issuance.
- A photo ID card issued by a Wisconsin accredited university or college that has expired, when shown along with proof of enrollment (like a tuition fee receipt or course schedule)
- An ID card issued by a federally recognized Indian tribe in Wisconsin (may be used even if expired before the most recent General Election)
The following types of ID are acceptable if they are unexpired:
- Certificate of naturalization that was issued no earlier than two years before the date of the election
- Driving receipt issued by Wisconsin DOT (valid for 45 days)
- ID card receipt issued by Wisconsin DOT (valid for 45 days)
- Citation or notice of intent to revoke or suspend a Wisconsin DOT issued drivers license that is dated within 60 days of the date of the election.
- Veteran's photo ID card issued by the Veterans Health Administration of the federal Department of Veterans Affairs
- Temporary ID card receipt issued by Wisconsin DOT through the Identification Petition Process (IDPP) (valid for 180 days)
You may show an ID card issued by a federally recognized Indian tribe in Wisconsin as well, if it is expired or unexpired.
The address on your photo ID card does not have to be current. The name on your photo ID card does not need to be an exact match for your name in the poll book.
If you are an absentee voter or have a sincere religious belief against being photographed, you may not need to show a photo ID in order to vote.
If you're in the military, live permanently overseas or are classified as a confidential elector, you do NOT need a photo ID to cast your absentee ballot.
If you are indefinitely confined (have difficulty traveling to the polling place due to age, physical illness, infirmity or disability), or live in a nursing home or care facility, you do NOT need to show your photo ID to vote.
For more information about photo ID please view your state's resource.
Free photo ID cards available.
If you need a photo ID card in order to vote, the DMV can help you get a free ID card. For more information on the process, please contact the DMV.
If you wish to obtain an ID for voting purposes, but have spiritual beliefs which prevent you from being photographed, you can receive a State ID card without a photo at any DMV office.
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 Wisconsin, you must:
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Be a resident of election district for the 28 days before the election.
- Complete required training
- Be a student 16 years or older, enrolled in a high school with a minimum GPA of a 3.0. You may work with written permission from a parent or guardian and school principal
Polling Place Hours
The polls will be open 7:00 am to 8:00 pm.
Polling Place Locator
A provisional ballot is a ballot that is marked by a voter but is not counted at the time it is cast. There are three cases where you may vote a provisional ballot.
Those case are:
- A qualified voter who has been issued a current and valid Wisconsin driver's license registers to vote at a polling place on election day, but cannot list the driver's license number on the registration
- A first-time Wisconsin voter who registers by mail before April 4, 2014, but does not provide an identifying document establishing proof of residence at the time they submit the registration form and is unable to provide the required proof of residence at the polling place.
- A registered voter is unable or unwilling to provide proof of ID
Provisional ballots are not given if the voter is in the wrong polling place or when a person is attempting to register in person at the polling place but does not provide proof of residence.
The provisional ballot will not be counted unless the voter provides the required information to the poll worker by 8pm on Election Day or to the municipal clerk by 4pm on the Friday following the election. If proper documentation is received in time, the ballot will be counted.
Provisions for Voters with Disabilities
Wisconsin ensures that voting be accessible for individuals with disabilities, including non-visual accessibility for the blind and visually impaired, in a manner that provides equal access and participation (including privacy and independence).
Any voter who needs help at the polls has a right to assistance. By law, a polling place must be accessible to a person with disabilities. It is a good idea to check the accessibility of the polling place ahead of time. You may find the building not accessible or have trouble getting to the polling location inside the building. If so, you may request that a poll worker bring a ballot to the building entrance or bring a friend along to assist you. If your polling place is not accessible, notify your city, town or village clerk's office and the Wisconsin Elections Commission.
You can have help casting your ballot if you have problems reading or writing, have difficulty with the English language or have a disability which prevents you from being able to mark the ballot or operate the voting machine. Ask for help when you give your name and address to the poll worker. Anyone you choose can help you, except your employer, an agent of your employer, or (if you belong to a labor union), an agent of your labor union. The person who is helping you must give his name and address to the poll workers and must sign the back of your ballot.
For help with disability-related voting questions or help filing a complaint, please call the Disability Rights Wisconsin Voter Hotline: 844-DIS-VOTE (844-347-8683).
For more information, you can also utilize the Wisconsin Election Commission's Voting Accessibility page.
You can now register to vote online! The mail and online voter registration deadline is 20 days before the election (Election Day registration is available at your polling place). You can use the Mail in Voter registration form to register by mail. Contact your municipal clerk's office for more details.
Not registered? Use our registration tool to fill out your application!
Time Off To Vote
Employers must give employees up to three hours to vote on Election Day while the polls are open. The employee must tell the employer of his/her intended absence. The employer may decide the time of day for the absence.
Verify Voter Registration
To verify your voter registration statusclick here!
The voting systems used in Wisconsin are optical scan, DRE, and paper ballots.
Optical Scan: With this system, you will receive a card or sheet of paper, which you take 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.
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) resource.
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