To vote is a privilege and your right guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States. Voting allows you to voice your opinions and bring about change in public policy on issues that are important to you. Decisions made in elections today impact your future, define your community and shape federal and state laws. It is up to you to exercise your right to vote and help set the course of Nevada’s and the nation’s future.
How to Vote
Voting is simple. Nevada law provides certain guidelines you must follow before you can vote. Specifically, Nevada law states that you must:
Be at least 18 years of age on or before Election Day;
Be a U.S. citizen;
Be a resident of Nevada for 30 days preceding any election;
Have your rights restored if you were convicted of a felony; and
Not have been declared by a court to be mentally incompetent.
In order to vote, you must first register. Simply fill out a voter registration application form, which may be found at:
• Your university Student Affairs office
• County Clerk/Registrar of Voters' office
• Online at the Election Assistance Commission
• Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles
• City Clerk’s office
• United States Post Office
• Utility companies
• Political party offices
• Local Chambers of Commerce
Return your completed application via mail or in person at:
Your County Clerk/Registrar of Voters office;
Your City Clerk Office; or
Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles
The only time you will need to submit another voter registration form is if you have changed your physical address, your name or your party affiliation. You can check your voter information anytime online at My Voter File.
As a college student, you may choose to register using your hometown address or your current off-campus home address. Keep in mind that you may register and vote in only one county/state per election. If you register using your hometown address, you will have to vote at your designated voting precinct location in your hometown or by absentee ballot.
To confirm your registration, you will receive a voter registration card by mail. If you do not receive this, please contact your local City Clerk or County Clerk/Registrar of Voters to verify that your application was received and processed.
*Federal Post Card Application: for use by military and overseas citizens; accepted as both registration and request for absent ballot; single form will cover both primary & general if submitted prior to deadline for primary
Be Politically Informed
Once you’ve registered, it’s important that you research the issues and candidates in the upcoming election. Check out candidates’ websites, look at voter guides, contact political parties’ offices - there’s ample information available to research. Being an informed voter will help you make educated decisions on ballot questions and candidates who share your same values and ideals.
State Political Party Links:
Nevada Democratic Party
Nevada Republican Party
Nevada Green Party
Nevada Independent American Party
Nevada Libertarian Party
Other Helpful Websites:
Now that you’ve done your homework, you’re ready to vote. A sample ballot will be provided to you from your County Clerk/Registrar of Voters office. Sample ballots contain the offices up for election in your precinct and questions appearing on the actual ballot. They also contain information about your precinct, your party affiliation, the name and address of your polling place and early voting schedule and locations. Review your sample ballot and mark your selections. It may be helpful to bring the sample ballot with you to your polling place as a reference when making your selections on Election Day.
Contact your County Clerk/Registrar of Voters office if you do not receive a sample ballot prior to the Primary or General Elections.
Voting Options for College Students
Early voting allows registered voters to vote at various locations throughout the state for a short period of time prior to the Primary Election and General Election Day.
To learn more about Early Voting in Nevada, click here.
Election Day Voting
If you choose to vote on Election Day, you must vote at your designated polling place. You may find your designated polling location on your sample ballot or by viewing “My Voter File” on the Nevada Secretary State’s website: www.nvsos.gov. Upon arriving to your polling location, you will be directed to your precinct table where an election clerk will verify your name and signature. You will then be directed to a voting machine to cast your ballot. The electronic touch-screen voting machine provides step-by-step instructions on how to properly make your ballot selections. Election officials are on site at each polling location to help you if you have any problems or questions regarding the voting machine.
Remember: If you are a student living outside your hometown but are registered with your hometown address, you will have to vote at either your designated voting precinct location in your hometown, or by absentee ballot. To verify your registration and polling location, contact your local City Clerk or County Clerk/Registrar of Voters or check online at My Voter File
To learn how to use a voting machine, click here.
Mail or Absentee Voting
If you are a student living out of state or outside your voting precinct, it may not be possible for you to get to the polls on Election Day. Your best option is to request to vote by mail or absentee ballot.
Any registered voter may request to vote by mail. To request an absentee ballot, you must complete and submit an Absentee Ballot Request Form, which may be obtained from your local County Clerk/Registrar of Voters office. Additional information on absentee voting is also available online.
• Clark County residents: Absentee Voter Information
• Washoe County residents: Absentee Voter Information
The Absentee Ballot Request Form must be received by your local county election official by the appropriate deadline.
• Primary Election Absent Ballot Request Deadline
º June 1, 2010 - Registered Voters (NRS 293.315)
º May 8, 2010 - Out Of State Voters (NRS 293.501, NAC 293.400)
• General Election Absent Ballot Request Deadline
º October 26, 2010 - Registered Voters (NRS 293.315)
º October 2, 2010 - Out Of State Voters (NRS 293.501, NAC 293.400)
If you are a first time voter, you must provide an acceptable form of identification with your completed Absentee Ballot Request Form. Acceptable forms of identification may include:
• Current Nevada Drivers’ License;
• Current Nevada State Identification Card;
• Rent receipt with pre-printed address;
• Bank statement or pre-printed check;
• Credit card statement;
• Vehicle registration or proof of insurance;
• Government document (tax bill, income information); or
• Current utility bill.
Contact your County Clerk/Registrar of Voters or the Elections Division of the Secretary of State’s Office if you have any questions regarding absentee voting.
It’s best to submit your request form early in order to allow enough time for your request to be processed, and for you to receive your ballot in a timely manner. All voted absentee ballots MUST be received by 7 p.m. on Election Day in order to be counted.