Washington Voting Guide
By FindLaw Staff | Legally reviewed by Kristine Tungol Cabagnot, Esq. | Last reviewed October 27, 2022
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Get answers to all of your questions about voting in the next election in FindLaw's Washington Voter Guide. On this page, you will find information about voter eligibility, voter registration and registration deadlines, mail-in and in-person voting, special accommodations for disabled Washington voters, and what you can do if you see illegal activity occurring at the polls.
Washington is a vote-by-mail state. This means that all counties across the state conduct elections by mail. Your ballot will be mailed to you before the election.
The ballot packet you will receive includes a ballot, a secrecy envelope, and a return envelope. When you receive your ballot, complete the form, sign your name, and place it in the secrecy envelope. Be sure to sign the ballot declaration. If you fail to sign it, or the signature on the ballot declaration does not match the signature on your voter registration record, you will be contacted by the county elections department.
Your ballot must be mailed from a post office and postmarked on Election Day (no stamp required), or dropped at a ballot drop box by 8 p.m.
Am I eligible to vote in Washington?
In order to register and vote in Washington, you must be a U.S. citizen, at least 18 years of age on Election Day, and registered to vote. You must have been a resident of the state for a minimum of 30 days prior to the election.
In 2019, Washington began its Future Voter program, allowing 16- and 17-year-old citizens to pre-register to vote. On their 18th birthday, they are automatically registered to vote.
In Washington State you cannot register and vote if:
- You have been disqualified from voting due to a court order of incompetency. A person under guardianship may still be able to vote if the guardianship papers affirm that right. When in doubt, you should receive a provisional ballot.
- You are under Washington Department of Corrections supervision for a felony conviction. Your right to vote is automatically restored after you complete total prison confinement, and you may re-register to vote.
How to Register in Washington
Washington makes it easy to register to vote. You can register:
At the DMV
Pick up a registration form at the DMV, at a library, or at your county elections department.
Your vote counts. Take the time to learn how and when to vote.
You Don’t Have To Solve This on Your Own – Get a Lawyer’s Help
Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.
Protect Your Voting Rights
Contact a qualified attorney if you suspect your rights have been violated.