Voting in Rhode Island

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Rhode Island permits no-excuse absentee voting, but does not allow online voter registration or early voting. Rhode Island voters are required to present valid photo identification at the polls.

For full information about voting in Rhode Island, contact the state election agency.


To vote in Rhode Island, you must be:[1]

  • a citizen of the United States,
  • a resident of the Rhode Island city or town where you wish to vote, and
  • at least 16 years of age. You must be at least 18 years of age to vote.[2]

—Rhode Island Secretary of State

When and where

The deadline to register to vote is at least 30 days prior to an election. You can register by mail or in person at the following locations:[1]

  • Your local registrar,
  • The Rhode Island Division of Motor Vehicles,
  • Any public assistance agency or program. or
  • Any military recruiting office.

Online registration

See also: Online voter registration in the 50 states

As of May 2015, Rhode Island is one of 30 states that have not implemented full online voter registration.

Voting on Election Day

Voter identification

See also: Voter identification laws by state

Photo identification is required at the polls. If a voter is unable to present photo ID, a provisional ballot may be cast that will be counted if the signature given matches the one on the voter registration.[3]

Poll times

See also: State Poll Opening and Closing Times

In Rhode Island, most polls open at 7 a.m. and all polls close at 8 p.m.[4]

Primary voting

Rhode Island is one of 21 states with a mixed primary system. Unaffiliated voters may vote in a party's primary, but they will then be considered affiliated with that party. In order to disaffiliate, they must file a "Change of Party Designation" form.[5]

Absentee voting

See also: Absentee voting


All voters are eligible to vote absentee in Rhode Island. There are no special eligibility requirements for voting absentee.[6]


Absentee ballot applications must be received by the county election office by 4 p.m. on the 21st day before the election. A returned absentee ballot must then be received by the elections office by 8 p.m. on Election Day.[6][7]

Military and overseas voting

For full details regarding military and overseas voting, visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program.

Early voting

See also: Early voting

Rhode Island is one of 14 states that do not have any form of early voting.[8]

Election policy ballot measures

Voting on
elections and campaigns
Ballot measures
By state
By year
Not on ballot
See also: Elections and campaigns on the ballot and List of Rhode Island ballot measures

Ballotpedia has tracked the following ballot measures relating to election and campaign policy in Rhode Island.

  1. Rhode Island Question 2, Restoration of Voting Rights Act (2006)

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the terms "Rhode Island voting."

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See also

Elections in Rhode Island

External links