Illinois early voting starts as vote-by-mail ballots go out

Illinois early voting starts as vote-by-mail ballots go out

With 40 days until the election, Illinois residents can vote early at their local county clerks’ office. Vote-by-mail ballots should arrive soon, but there is still time to apply for one.

Sept. 29 marks the first day Illinois voters can start submitting their choices, as both early in-person voting begins and mail ballots are received and may be returned ahead of the Nov. 8 election.

Here’s what you need to know.

When does early voting open?

Per the election code, Illinois voters may beging in-person voting Sept. 29, which is 40 days before general election. The same date applies to voting by mail.

Who can vote by mail?

Under Illinois law, any registered Illinois voter can choose to vote by mail. Voters can click here to download a vote-by-mail registration form and should submit it to their local election authority.

What’s permanent vote by mail?

Voters can register to receive all their ballots in the mail for all elections. This election is the first in which voters can pick the permanent mail voting option. Voters can still vote in person, but must take their mail ballot and surrender it to the election judges. Find more information about permanent vote-by-mail registration here.

How do I vote in person?

The first step to voting, either in person or using vote by mail, is to ensure you’re registered. Not sure if you’re registered? Click here.

Where can I vote early in-person?

Illinois residents should contact their local county clerk’s office for information on early voting locations and permanent early voting locations or check the Illinois Board of Elections early voting center location tool.

Important dates, deadlines

Tuesday, Oct. 11 – Last day for voter registration using mailed-in forms. Forms must be post-marked by Oct 11. Voters can still register online or in person at the polls. Voters should confirm with their county clerk’s office which polling places will accept same-day registration.

Sunday, Oct. 23  –  Last day for online voter registration. Residents can register online at the Illinois Board of Elections website.

Thursday, Nov. 3 – Last day for vote-by-mail requests to be completed online or received by the election authority if mailed, emailed or delivered in person.

Tuesday, Nov. 8 – Election Day. Polls are open 6 a.m.–7 p.m. Mail-in ballots must be postmarked by this date.

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