Voting in North Carolina
Voting in 2014 Primaries
Ballot access for major and minor party candidates
Absentee voting • Early voting
Open Primary • Closed Primary • Blanket Primary
Online voter registration in the 50 states
To vote in North Carolina, you must meet the following requirements:
- Must be a U.S. citizen.
- Must be a resident of North Carolina.
- Prior to voting, must be a resident of the county for at least 30 days prior to election day.
- Must be at least 18 years old or will be 18 by the date of the next general election.
- Must rescind any previous registration in another county or state.
- If previously convicted of a felony, the person’s citizenship rights must be restored (must not be serving an active sentence, including probation or parole).
When and where
The deadline to register to vote is 25 days before election day. Registration forms can be printed from the state website and are also available at county boards of elections’ offices, public libraries, high schools and college admissions offices. Voter registration services are also provided by the following agencies:
- North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles
- Public Assistance Agencies
- Departments of Social Services (DSS)
- Departments of Public Health (WIC)
- Disability Services Agencies
- Vocational Rehabilitation offices
- Departments of Services for the Blind
- Departments of Services for the Deaf & Hard of Hearing
- Departments of Mental Health Services
- Employment Security Commission (ESC)
As of August 2014, North Carolina is one of the 35 states that have not implemented online voter registration. North Carolina has bills pending in the 2013-2014 legislative session which would authorize online voter registration. One bill was introduced in the North Carolina House of Representatives.. A separate bill was introduced in the North Carolina Senate.
Voting on election day
Voters are asked for their ID if they are first time voters who mailed in their registration application and did not provide verification of their identification.
- See also: State Poll Opening and Closing Times
North Carolina is one of 21 states with a mixed primary system. Parties decide who may vote, and they opened the primary election to unaffiliated voters. They may choose which ballot they want to vote on without affecting their unaffiliated status.
- See also: Absentee voting
All voters are eligible to vote absentee in North Carolina. There are no special eligibility requirements for voting absentee.
A request to vote absentee must be received by the appropriate county board of elections no later than 5 PM on the last Tuesday before the election. The voted ballot must then be received by the elections office by 5 PM on the day before the election.
Military and overseas voting
For full details, visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program here.
- See also: Early voting
North Carolina is one of 34 states that has early voting with no specific requirements as to who can vote early. Early voting begins on the third Thursday, 19 days, prior to election day and ends on the Saturday, three days, prior to the election. The average number of days prior to an election that voters can cast an early ballot is 21 days in states with a definitive starting date.
- North Carolina State Board of Elections, "Voter Information," accessed June 10, 2014
- Open States, "HB 102," accessed June 10, 2014
- Open States, "SB 298," accessed June 10, 2014
- North Carolina State Board of Elections, "Voter ID Requirements in NC," accessed June 10, 2014
- North Carolina General Statutes, "163-166.01," accessed January 3, 2014
- NC Election Connection, "Who Can Vote in Which Elections?" accessed January 3, 2014
- North Carolina State Board of Elections, "Absentee Voting by Mail," accessed December 16, 2013
- North Carolina State Board of Elections "One-stop Absentee Voting (Early Voting)," accessed December 16, 2013