Request and track
Notice: Mail-in voting is a convenient and safe way to vote, but your ballot might not count if it’s submitted late or with errors. So follow the directions below on how to vote early or absentee and make your vote count in Rhode Island.
Voting by mail is a two step process in Rhode Island.
Step 1: Request your ballot NOW. You must apply directly to your local board of canvassers. The deadline for your application to be received is October 18th.
Step 2: Complete and return your ballot ASAP.
Emergency mail-in ballot requests may be made after October 18th, but require an event that was unknown or prevented the voter from applying earlier. Contact your local board of canvassers for more info.
Remember to sign your return ballot.
After you complete your ballot, be sure to sign the voter's certification envelope.
If you return your ballot by mail, your postage is prepaid.
You can also drop off your ballot in person at your local elections office, or drop box.
Any designated person can drop off a ballot for you.
If you have an absentee ballot that you are not going to use, or you miss the deadline to return, you may go to your board of canvassers and vote in person. You will be asked to use a provisional ballot. This is better than not voting, but may not be counted.
Rhode Island does offer voters a chance to address challenges to their ballot.
Your state has a cure period, which means you can “cure” a challenge to the signature on your ballot if it was done incorrectly. Your local elections office is required to contact you and give you options to remedy your ballot. You must cure your ballot by the 7th day after Election Day by 4 pm.
You may get a call from a number you do not recognize with a notification that you need to cure your ballot. Be sure to pick so you don’t miss your chance to make sure your vote is counted.
Rhode Island voters must show ID at the polls to vote. Below are the accepted forms of ID.
Enter your address below to see what you can expect on Election Day.
Primary Type (D): Open
Primary Type (R): Open
Voters that have been unaffiliated for at least 90 days may vote in either primary. Their selection serves to affiliate them with the party. Otherwise, voters may only participate in the primary of the party with which they are affiliated. See Rhode Island Republican Party or Democratic Party sites for more details.
Your state automatically registers people to vote at their address of record when they interact with certain state agencies. If you have moved, changed your name or want to add a political party selection, you must update your voter registration. Click here to check to see if you are registered to vote, and update your registration if needed.
You can register to vote and cast your ballot on Election Day at your polling place or local elections office. Bring a valid ID and proof of residence with you.
You may vote early through November 7th at 4 p.m. Contact your local board of canvassers for exact locations and times.
Some states have laws that specifically allow citizens to preregister at a certain age while others allow registration as long as you’re 18 by the next election. Preregistration means you’ll be automatically registered to vote on your 18th birthday without taking any additional steps.
In Rhode Island, you can preregister to vote if you are 16. Register to vote today!
Some states even let you vote in their primaries at 17 if you’ll be 18 by the general election so you can participate in the whole process!
You can not vote in the Rhode Island primaries if you are 17 by the next election.