Frequently Asked Questions

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How do I register to vote?

The easiest way to register to vote is online. All you need
is your driver's license number and your social security number. No paper
required! Just click on the "Register to Vote" link on our front page, or go to click here, and you'll
be directed to the Nevada Secretary of State's secure website for quick and
easy registration. You can also register to vote by completing a "Voter
Registration Application" and presenting it to the Registrar of Voters Office,
the DMV, any State Welfare Agency or by mailing the form to the Registrar of
Voters Office, P O Box 11130, Reno NV 89520



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When and where can I early vote?

Early voting for the upcoming June 14, 2016 Primary Election starts Saturday, May 28, 2016 and runs through Friday, June 10, 2016.  Several polling locations will also be open on Sundays again this year.  View the full schedule for early voting locations online.



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What are Major and Minor Political Parties?

In Nevada, only the Democratic Party and Republican Party are designated as MAJOR Political Parties. The members of these parties choose their candidates to run for office (and face all other candidates) through the conduct of a Primary Election.

The Green Party, Independent American Party, Libertarian Party, Natural Law Party and Reform Party are examples of MINOR Political Parties. While members of these Minor Political Parties are still eligible to vote for nonpartisan offices on their ballots in a Primary Election, they nominate their candidates for office by conducting statewide conventions for their party members only.



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What is the difference between a sample ballot and a mail/absentee ballot?

The Sample Ballot contains both an information pamphlet and a sample copy (facsimile) of the ballot the voter will be able to cast. This sample contains a complete list of offices and issues for which the voter is eligible to vote.  The sample copy (facsimile) cannot be marked and used as an official ballot. It is for informational purposes only.

Absentee ballots can be requested by voters who cannot or do not wish to vote in-person during early voting or on Election Day.  This is an official ballot that will be cast if voted and returned to the Registrar of Voters office by the deadline.  The request for an absentee ballot must be in writing and made by the deadline for each election to be honored. After the request is processed, the voter will be sent Mail/Absentee Ballot voting materials, which include a paper ballot and voting instructions.



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How do I request my address and telephone number be withheld from publicly available lists?
REQUEST TO WITHHOLD ADDRESS AND PHONE NUMBER FROM PUBLIC NRS 293.558 - NRS allows a voter to submit a written request asking for his/her address and/or phone number to be withheld from any list produced by the Registrar of Voters Office. Identification numbers are never disclosed to the public and how a person voted is always private.

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How will I know if I am registered to vote?
You can check your registration status online at
http://www.washoecounty.us/voters as well as look up precinct and district information and your assigned polling place on election day. Simply provide your name and birth date on the right side of the web page (under the flag) and click search.  You may also view this information from the Secretary of States website.

In addition to checking your status online, within two weeks of the time your registration form is processed by the Registrar's Office, you will receive a Voter Registration Card in the mail. While it is not required that you bring this card with you when you vote, it does expedite the voting process and can clear-up any misunderstandings regarding name spelling and/or the residence where you are registered to vote. It also affirms your status as an active registered voter.



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Where can I get a voter registration form?

1. Registrar of Voters Office, 1001 E Ninth St., RM A135, Reno NV 89512

2. DMV Offices

3. State Welfare Agencies

4. Most Post Offices

5. Libraries



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Who is eligible to register to vote?

Any person who has correctly completed and filed a "Voter
Registration Application" with the Registrar of Voters Office and:

1. Is a U.S. Citizen

2. Will be at least 18 year old by the next election day

3. Has continuously resided in Washoe County at least 30 days

4. Claims no other place as his/her legal residence

5. Is not currently serving or under probation for a felony conviction and has completed the process to have his/her voting rights re-established if convicted of a felony in the past

6. Has not been determined by a court of law to be mentally incompetent.



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What information is required to complete a Voter Registration Application?

You'll need to provide the following:

1. Full Name

2. Washoe County Residence Address (NOT a P O Box or mailing address)

3. Mailing Address (if different from residence address)

4. Date of Birth

5. Political Party Affiliation

6. Signature

7. Driver's License Number

NOTE: In order to register to vote, under Federal Law, every applicant will need to provide
his/her Drivers License Number. In the event that the applicant does not have a
Drivers License Number to provide, he/she will be required to provide the last
four digits of his/her Social Security Number. If the applicant has neither of
these numbers, a unique number will be assigned to that person - but only after
signing an affidavit stating, under penalty of law, that he/she does not possess
either a driver's license or Social Security Number.



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Why would I have to re-register to vote?

You would re-register if you:

1. Have been "canceled" for not voting in two consecutive Federal Elections and have failed to respond to any notification sent by the Registrar's Office,

2. Have changed your place of residence and/or mailing address since the last time you voted (a change of address card may also be used for this purpose),

3. Want to change your political party affiliation,

4. Have changed your name since your previous registration (i.e. married or legal name change),

5. Moved back into Washoe County from another Nevada County or State.



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What if I am in the Military or Live Overseas?
In these instances, it is probably most efficient to use the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) which is a combination registration form
and absentee ballot request.

While your FPCA registration form is valid until canceled, the absent ballot request is good for only the calendar year in
which it is submitted and must be renewed before each year's elections. This can be done by simply writing a letter requesting an absentee ballot for all elections in that particular calendar year. The FPCA is available from the Voting Office at each military base and at all U.S. Embassies or Consulates, or online at www.fvap.gov.



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What is the deadline to submit a voter registration application prior to an election?

If you register BY MAIL-

Applications must be mailed to the Registrar's Office, PO Box 11130, Reno, NV 89520 and be postmarked no later than the 31st day (Saturday) prior to Election Day. 

If you register IN PERSON-

  1. At the DMV - Your application must be received by the 31st day prior to Election Day, OR
  2. At the Registrar of Voters Office - To take advantage of the "extended" close of registration period between the 21st and 31st day prior to election day, you must appear IN PERSON at 1001 E 9th St, Bldg A, Reno 89512, to register.


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Why do I have to choose a party affiliation when I register to vote?
Nevada has a "closed primary" system in which only registrants who are members of a specific political party (major parties only) are eligible to vote for the candidate of that party for partisan offices in the Primary Elections. By choosing to be a "Nonpartisan" or affiliated with one of the minor political parties, a registrant is restricted to voting only for candidates for nonpartisan offices and the questions that appear on their Primary Election Ballot.

Remember, in a General Election, all voters are eligible to vote on all candidates, races and questions that appear on their ballot, regardless of their or a candidate's party affiliation.