Join thousands of other Highlanders and make sure your voice is heard in every local, state, and federal election.
Moved or changed your address in the last 6 months? RE-REGISTER!
Do any of these questions pertain to you?
- What if I moved recently?
- What if I was temporarily displaced because of COVID-19?
- Do I even know what address I am registered with?
- How will I vote if my ballot gets automatically sent to whatever address I am registered with but I don't live there anymore?
- What if I don't have access to my mailbox?
California is a vote-by-mail state. Everyone that is registered to vote will automatically receive their ballot in the mail. If you are unsure about your registered address, the best thing for you to do is to check your voter registration status. If you no longer live at the address listed, please re-register. It takes a few minutes and will save you a huge headache when it's time to vote.
Important COVID-19 Updates for Voter Registration
COVID-19 Updates: COVID-19 has forced us all to make many drastic adjustments in our lives. In an effort to make sure you have the easiest time voting in November, please keep the following information in mind:
- In response to COVID-19, the state of California is now a vote-by-mail state. This means that everyone who is registered to vote will automatically receive their ballot in the mail.
- If you're already a registered voter, please check your voter status at voterstatus.sos.ca.gov to see what address your ballot will be mailed to. Many of our UCR students have been temporarily displaced because of COVID-19, and you might not be living at the address you have listed.
- Your vote-by-mail ballot will automatically be sent to the address shown on your voter registration. If you no longer live there because of COVID-19, or you can't access that address, you need to re-register to vote so that you can list your new current address and ensure you get your ballot. You can re-register at covr.sos.ca.gov
- Don't wait to re-register! It is super easy to click this link right now and ensure you get your ballot. You don't want to put it off for later and find that your ballot has been sent to an address you are no longer at.
How to Vote
Election Day is Tues., Nov. 3, 2020 — but get started as soon as you receive your vote-by-mail ballot!
- Get your ballot! Registered voters do not have to apply for a vote-by-mail ballot for this election – everyone will get one automatically. All registered voters will automatically be sent a vote-by-mail ballot. You should receive your ballot no later than 29 days prior to the election.
- Understand your ballot! When you receive your vote-by-mail ballot, review it and become familiar with it. Read your voter guide, learn about the candidates and measures, and take your time making the most informed decisions you can.
- Prepare your ballot!
- Make your selections on the ballot and insert your ballot in the provided envelope.
- Make sure you complete all of the required information on the exterior of the envelope and sign it in the designated signature box.
- Make sure that your ballot is sealed and ready to go.
- Select one of these options and submit your ballot!
- A.) You can send your vote-by-mail ballot in the mail by dropping it in your mailbox or dropping it off at any USPS mailing location/box. If returning by mail, your ballot must be postmarked on or before Election Day (11/3/2020) and received by your county elections office no later than 17 days after Election Day.
- B.) You can submit your vote-by-mail ballot in person at any vote center or drop-off location no later than 8 p.m. on Election Day (11/3/2020). Find your options here: sos.ca.gov/elections
- C.) You can ask someone to turn in your ballot for you. Anyone can submit your ballot for you as long as they are not paid. In order for your ballot to be counted, you must fill out the authorization section on the outside of the envelope, or else it will not be accepted.
Your county will have select vote centers that you can visit and vote. You need to take your vote-by-mail ballot with you and surrender it to the volunteers at the vote center. Upon surrendering your vote-by-mail ballot, they will give you a brand new one that you can use to vote at that location! If you do not have your vote-by-mail ballot, you can still vote by receiving a provisional ballot. To find where your closest vote center will be, go here: sos.ca.gov/elections
Voting by Mail is Safe, Easy, and Convenient
California Voter FAQ
With COVID-19 around will there even be an election this year?
Yes! Even though we have all had to make huge adjustments in our lives because of COVID-19, the election in November is still happening. The state of California has issued an executive order that the state will now be a vote-by-mail state. This means that everyone who registers to vote will automatically receive their ballot by mail. Everyone who is already registered to vote will also automatically receive their ballot in the mail. We highly encourage you to check your voter registration status at sos.ca.gov/elections/cavoter and pay specific attention to the address you have listed. If you didn’t provide a specific mailing address, then your ballot will be sent to whatever address you registered with. If you registered with an address near UCR, and you have been temporarily displaced because of COVID-19, then your ballot will still go to that address but you won't be able to access it.
If you find that you need to make a change to your address to ensure you receive your ballot, you will need to re-register—it only takes a minute or two at covr.sos.ca.gov
Am I eligible to register to vote?
You can register to vote in California if you are:
- A U.S. citizen and a resident of California.
- 18 years of age or older on Election Day.
- Not currently imprisoned or on parole for a felony conviction.
- Not found by a court to be mentally incompetent to vote.
Note: Online pre-registration is now available for eligible 16- and 17-year olds. California youth who pre-register to vote will have their registration become active once they turn 18-years-old.
Where can I register to vote?
Registering to vote is super easy! Head over to studentvote.org/ca-register The deadline to register to vote is October 19, 2020.
Where can I check to see if I am already registered?
Use online tools provided by the California Secretary of State at sos.ca.gov/elections/cavoter to learn if you are registered to vote in California.
What is the difference between permanent address and mailing address?
When you register to vote, you have the option of providing your home address and a mailing address.
- Home Address: This is the location you want your ballot to represent. This is likely your family's home. Whatever address you pick as your home address, your ballot will include measures specific to that area. Home address is also sometimes called a residence or permanent address.
- Mailing Address: This is where you want your vote-by-mail ballot to go. You will also receive other information and documents about elections at this address. Home address and mailing address do not need to be the same. We HIGHLY encourage you to check your voter registration so you know what address you are registered with and you can ensure that you can still access that location to receive your ballot.
Whatever address you list you need to make sure that you include a complete address. If it is an apartment complex, for example, you need to include your apartment/room number.
I had to move because of COVID-19, do I need to re-register?
It depends. Your ballot is going to automatically go to whatever address you used to register. If you included a mailing address, it will go there. If you have been temporarily displaced because of COVID-19, you need to check your voter registration to see what address you registered with at voterstatus.sos.ca.gov. Your ballot will go to that address and if you don’t live there anymore because of COVID-19 you will need to re-register to vote so that you can change your address to where you are currently located covr.sos.ca.gov
Will there be polling places on the UCR Campus?
Check back on this page for any updates about a vote center or drop-off location at UCR.
To find the closest one to you, please visit: sos.ca.gov/elections
Do I need to re-register if I change my surname or political party?
Yes. If you legally change your name or wish to change your registered political party, you need to re-register to vote at covr.sos.ca.gov
I still have questions. Who can I contact?
For questions regarding voter engagement, contact the office of Student Life at firstname.lastname@example.org
Where can I drop off my ballot if I want to submit it myself?
If you prefer to submit your vote-by-mail ballot in person, you can go to any vote center or drop off location an do so—it's easy! Go here to find your closest vote center or drop off location: sos.ca.gov/elections
How can I find out where my ballot is?
If you want to ensure that your ballot arrives safely and is counted, or you are curious about where it is — you can track your ballot! Go here for more info: sos.ca.gov/elections
Do I have that option to vote in person?
If you prefer to vote in person, you still have that option. You can go to any vote center in your county and vote. You need to take your vote-by-mail ballot with you and turn it in. By surrendering your ballot, you can receive a brand new one and vote at the vote center. If you lost your ballot, never received it, or don’t have it on you at that moment, you can still vote at that voting center with a provisional ballot. You can find the closest vote center to you here: sos.ca.gov/elections
I missed the Oct. 19 voter registration deadline. What can I do?
If you miss the Oct. 19 deadline to register to vote online, you can still register in person. You can head to any vote center or to your County Registrar of Voters office to do so. You can even register to vote on the day of the election! There is no excuse! Find more info here: sos.ca.gov/elections
UCR's Student Registration and Voting
Find out how UCR's student registration and voting rates measure up: