Voter Registration Requirements

  • You need to be a United States citizen.
  • You need to be 18 or older on Election Day.
  • You need to be a resident of Tennessee.
  • You can't have been convicted of a felony -- or, if you have, your full rights of citizenship must have since been restored.
  • If you're a first-time voter who registers by mail, you're required to submit proof of identification either at the time of registration or when you vote. You can include a copy of your identification with your registration form today! Acceptable forms of ID include: a current utility bill, bank statement, valid photo ID, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows your name and address.

Don't forget -- your state may have additional ID requirements when you go to the polls.

If you have additional questions about voting in Tennessee, please contact:

Division of Elections: (615)-741-7956;

Registration Deadline

  • Postmarked by: 30 days before Election Day.

Felony Information

Under Tennessee law, whether you can register and vote after being convicted of a felony depends on the type of felony that you were convicted of and when you were convicted. For more information, visit Tennessee's Restoration Information website or contact the Tennessee Division of Elections.

Information for Students

  • You must be a resident of the state in which you register and vote. If you're a student from Tennessee who attends school in another state, you may need to determine whether you're a Tennessee resident or a resident of the state where you attend school. The important thing to keep in mind is that you may only cast your vote in one state.
  • Here's what Tennessee says about residency: Under Tennesse law, your residence is the fixed place where you live and to which, whenever you're away, you definitely intend to return. You must intend this place to be your residence and actions that you take must be consistent with this intention. The following factors, among others, may be considered in determining your residency: location of any land you own; location of your workplace; the place where you pay taxes; the reason you are in a particular place; and the address on your driver's license.
  • If you determine you're a Tennessee resident, but will not be present in this state or will be away from your home district on Election Day, be sure to check the absentee ballot application requirements and deadlines. In addition, Tennessee residents who attend school in-state, but in a different election district, may be eligible to register and vote in the election district where they live while attending school.
  • To determine whether you're a resident of a different state where you attend school, be sure to check that state's residency requirements.

Identification Information

Tennessee says that you need to bring ONE of the following forms of identification:

  • Any ID with a signature, or
  • Voter registration card

If you don't have an ID with a signature, you can sign an affidavit of identity.

First-time voters who registered by mail need to bring ONE of the following:

  • Tennessee driver's license, or
  • Photo ID that shows name and signature, or
  • Current voter registration card, or
  • Current utility bill, or
  • Current bank statement, or
  • Current government check, or
  • Current paycheck, or
  • Any other current government document that shows your name and address plus either another document with your name and signature (examples: Social Security card, credit card with a signature), OR
  • You may sign an official affidavit of identity to be allowed to vote

Same Day Registration


Early Voting Information

In Tennessee, you don't have to wait until Election Day to vote. You can skip Election Day lines and vote early at a time that's convenient for you.

Vote Early in Person

  • All voters are eligible to vote early in person - no excuse is needed.
  • You can cast your vote in person at either your County Election Commission office or other Early Voting Centers from October 17, 2012 to November 1, 2012.
  • Details regarding early voting locations and times from your local County Election Commission are available here.

  • Vote Early by Mail

    In order to be eligible for early voting by mail, you must fall into any one of the following categories:

    • You will be outside the county of registration during the early voting period and all day on Election Day
    • You or your spouse is enrolled as a full-time student in an accredited college or university outside the county of registration
    • Your licensed physician has filed a statement with the county election commission stating that, in the physician's judgment, you are medically unable to vote in person. The statement must be filed not less than five (5) days before the election and signed under the penalty of perjury.
    • You reside in a licensed facility providing relatively permanent domiciliary care, other than a penal institution, outside your county of residence
    • You will be unable to vote in person due to service as a juror for a federal or state court
    • You are 65 years of age or older
    • You have a physical disability and an inaccessible polling place
    • You are hospitalized, ill, or physically disabled and because of such condition, cannot vote in person
    • You are a caretaker of a person who is hospitalized, ill, or disabled
    • You are a candidate for office in the election
    • You serve as an Election Day official or as a member or employee of the election commission
    • Your observance of a religious holiday prevents you from voting in person during the early voting period and on Election Day
    • You possess a valid commercial driver's license and certifies that he or she will be working outside the state or county of registration during the early voting period and all day on Election Day
    • You are a member of the military or an overseas citizen

    To vote early by mail, send a document to your County Election Commission that contains the following information:

    • Your name
    • Your address
    • Your social security number
    • Address to mail the ballot outside the county (this applies only when the reason for voting by mail involves that you will be outside of the county during early voting and on election day)
    • Reason you wish to vote absentee
    • Your signature

    The County Election Commission must receive your request for an absentee ballot by 7 days before the election. To ensure that you are able to return your absentee ballot on time, make sure to submit your application as soon as possible.

    Once you have completed your absentee ballot, you must return it so that your County Election Commission receives your ballot by the close of polls on Election Day.

Secretary of State