To register to vote you must be …

  • a U.S. citizen;
  • at least 18 years of age by Election Day;
  • a resident of Michigan and the city or township where you are applying to register to vote.

How to Register

You can register on the same day to vote for federal, state and local elections by mail; at your county, city or township clerk’s office; or by visiting any Secretary of State branch office.

You may also register at the same time you renew your driver’s license by mail. Eligible drivers receive a voter registration application in the mail with their driver’s license renewal information.

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Change of Address

If you move within a city or township, you must update your address. This can be handled through your local clerk, at a Secretary of State branch office, by mail or at any other location where voter registrations are accepted.

Whenever you move to a new city or township, you must re-register to vote.

The residential address used for your voter registration must be the same as the address on your driver’s license. Consequently, when you submit a driver’s license address change, it will be applied to your voter registration. Similarly, when you submit a voter registration address change, it will be applied to your driver’s license.

First-time voter

If you have never voted in Michigan and you registered by mail, you must appear in person to vote in the first election in which you wish to participate. This requirement does not apply if:

  1. You personally hand deliver the mail-in registration form to your county, city or township clerk’s office instead of mailing the form.
  2. You are 60 years of age or more.
  3. You are disabled.
  4. You are eligible to vote under the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act.

If you have never voted in Michigan and you registered by mail, you may also be subject to identification requirements provided under federal law. The identification requirements are explained on the mail-in registration form.

Outside the U.S.

If you are temporarily outside the U.S., you may use a Federal Postcard Application (FPCA) form to register. The FPCA forms are distributed through U.S. embassies and military bases. A Michigan resident who moves and registers out of state may not re-register to vote in Michigan until he or she re-establishes residency here.

How to Vote

To vote, simply appear at your assigned polling place on Election Day. The polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Where to Vote

Your Voter Identification Card lists your precinct number and your assigned polling place location. If you do not receive a Voter Identification Card within three weeks after registering, contact your city or township clerk’s office to confirm your registration status. You may also check your status on the Michigan Voter Information Center Web site at

Absentee Ballots

Due to the passage of the statewide ballot proposal 18-3 in November, all eligible and registered voters in Michigan may now request an absent voter ballot without providing a reason. Check your voter registration at Michigan Voter Information Center

Send the completed application to your city or township clerk for federal, state, city and township elections.

Outside the U.S.

Federal Postcard Application (FPCA) can also be used to apply for an absentee ballot if you are temporarily outside the U.S. The FPCA must be signed under oath unless you, your spouse or your parents are serving in the armed forces or Merchant Marines.

Emergency Absentee Ballots

You may be eligible for an emergency absentee ballot if a family death or illness requires you to leave your community on Election Day, or you are unable to attend the polls because of personal illness or accident. The emergency must have occurred late enough that you could not file a regular absentee ballot request. Have someone deliver your written request for an emergency absentee ballot to the clerk’s office before 4 p.m. on Election Day. Emergency ballots must be returned by 8 p.m. on Election Day.

Voters Requiring Assistance

Special accommodations are available for voters who have disabilities.

If you require voting assistance, ask the election workers for help; a reason for the needed assistance does not have to be stated. Two inspectors will assist you in the voting station.

An elector who is visually impaired, has a disability or is unable to read or write may be assisted with his or her ballot by any person of the voter’s choice, other than the voter’s employer or agent of that employer or an officer or agent of a union to which the voter belongs.

A voter-assist terminal is available for use by voters who have disabilities. This ballot marking device is designed to permit voters with disabilities to vote independently without the assistance of another person. For more information, contact your city or township clerk. Hearing-impaired residents may access the Bureau of Elections at (517) 373-2540 by calling the Michigan Relay Center toll-free at (800) 649-3777.