Know Your Voting Rights

Be Your Own Advocate

Knowing your rights and the rights of others is critical to ensuring your right to vote. Watch these videos to learn your rights as you cast your vote.

Special thanks to the National Education Association for making the production of these videos possible.

To view this video in other languages, click the links below:

 

Have questions or need help voting?

Call 1-888-API-VOTE
(1-888-274-8683).

Bilingual assistance is available in English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, Vietnamese, Tagalog, Urdu, Hindi, and Bengali. Learn more.

Frequently Asked Questions

Verify your registration by contacting the local elections office before Election Day. If you are registered and a poll worker says you are not, ask the poll worker to double-check the list and confirm you are at the correct polling site for your address. If you are at the correct polling site and your registration cannot be verified, the poll worker should offer you a provisional ballot. It is your right to request and receive a provisional ballot. Many poll workers have not been properly trained with provisional ballots. The provisional ballot allows you to cast your vote, but will only be counted after the election and once your voter eligibility has been verified.

Most states do not require ID to vote, unless this is your first time voting and you registered by mail.  According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, a total of 36 states have laws requesting or requiring voters to show some form of identification at the polls, 35 of which are in force in 2020. The remaining 14 states use other methods to verify the identity of voters. Most frequently, other identifying information provided at the polling place, such as a signature, is checked against information on file.  You should check with your state elections office before you vote, or simply bring ID just in case. If you show up on Election Day without an ID and your state requires ID, you can still vote using the provisional ballot. A provisional ballot allows you to cast your vote, but will only be counted after the election and once your voter eligibility has been verified. It is your right to request and receive a provisional ballot. NO poll worker or monitor may ask about your citizenship status or require proof. This is illegal.

You may ask a poll worker for a demonstration of the voting machine or ballot. Voting instructions should also be posted at the poll site. You may also bring a person of your choice (except for your employer or union representative) into the voting booth to help you.

No, you do not need to speak, read, or write English in order to vote. No such requirement exists to vote. You only need to be a registered voter. If you need help voting, you may bring a person of your choice (except for your employer or union representative) into the voting booth to help you interpret the ballot. You may also ask the poll workers for assistance. Also, Section 203 requires certain counties and jurisdictions to provide bilingual voting materials in communities with language minorities and limited-English proficient residents.

Everyone in line when the poll closes has the right to vote. You cannot be turned away because of a long line. If you are turned away, contact your local election officials immediately. You can call the toll-free multilingual Asian Hotline managed by APIAVote and Asian American Advancing Justice at 888-API-VOTE (888-274-8683).

You have the right to vote for the candidate of your choice. You have the right to vote in secrecy. If anyone is threatening you with physical violence, report this at once.You can call the toll-free multilingual Asian Hotline managed by APIAVote and Asian American Advancing Justice at 888-API-VOTE (888-274-8683).

Write down all relevant information about the incident: the date and time, polling location, name(s) of the individual(s) involved, summary of what took place, and any names and contact information of witnesses. You have several options to report voting rights violations. You can report the incident to election monitors that may be stationed at your polling site. You can call the toll-free multilingual Asian Hotline managed by APIAVote and Asian American Advancing Justice at 888-API-VOTE (888-274-8683). Bilingual assistance is available in English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Korean, Vietnamese, Tagalog, Urdu, Hindi, and Bengali.