10 Ways Your Right To Vote Is Protected in North Carolina

As a voter in North Carolina, it’s important for you to understand the many ways NC protects your voting rights. As published in the 2010 General Election Judicial Voter Guide, the North Carolina State Board of Elections explains 10 ways your right to vote is protected. If you have any questions about the content, please refer the the North Carolina State Board of Elections.

  1. HOURS. Each polling place is open between 6:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Election Day. If you are in line by 7:30 p.m., your right to vote is protected; you will be allowed to vote. It’s the law: See NCGS 163-166.01
  2. ASSISTANCE. You have the right to receive assistance from a family member or, if you have difficulty reading or have a disability that impairs your ability to vote, you have the right to assistance from any person of your choice, except from your employer or union agent. You can also receive ballot instructions in Spanish. NCGS 163-166.8 and 168-165-5A
  3. PROVISIONAL BALLOT. If any problem arises, you have a right to vote with a provisional ballot. For example, ask for a provisional ballot if you believe you have registered but your name is not on the rolls; or if you question the voting district (or ballot) assigned to you; or if you are told that you are in the wrong precinct. You must also be given a way to find out if the provisional ballot was counted, and if not, the rea-son it was not counted. NCGS 163-166.11
  4. IDENTIFICATION. In general, you do not have to show identification to poll workers when you vote. NCGS 163-82.8. A voter’s identification is cross-checked with NC Driver License and SSA information when they register. However, if you are a first-time voter whose identification data did not match, you will be notified by mail of required identification that you will need to present before voting for the first time. Acceptable ID includes a current NC driver license or other government issued photo ID, or one of these documents with your name and current address: utility bill (electric, gas, phone, water, cable bill), pay-stub/W-2, bank statement, or any document from any government agency. NCGS 163-166.12
  5. IF YOU HAVE MOVED. If you have moved from one place to another within the same county and have not updated your registration, you can update your registration and vote at an Early Voting One-Stop site in your county. Specific rules apply if you wait until Election Day: If you have lived in your new location more than 30 days, you have the right to vote in your new precinct or at a central location. If you have moved, but have lived in your new location less than 30 days, you must vote in your old precinct or cast a provisional ballot in your new precinct. If you have moved within your precinct, you have the right to update your information at the polls and vote. NCGS 163-82.15
  6. NAME CHANGE. If your name has changed since you registered to vote, you have the right to vote, even if you have not reported your name change to election officials. NCGS 163-82.16
  7. SPOILED BALLOT. If you make a mistake and “spoil” your ballot, you have a right to a new ballot. You can spoil up to three (3) ballots. 8 NCAC 10B.0104b
  8. CURBSIDE VOTING. If the polling place is inaccessible to you due to a disability, you have a right to vote at the curb, in the vehicle you came in, or at the door of the polling place. NCGS 163-166.9
  9. EX-OFFENDERS & MISDEMEANANTS. You have a right to register and vote if you are in jail for a misdemeanor. If you were convicted of a felony in any state, you have the right to register and vote in North Carolina if you have completed your sentence in-cluding any parole and probation. Your citizenship rights are restored automatically upon your discharge as a felon and you do not need a separate document to register. You must re-register again after the discharge. NCGS 13-1
  10. INTIMIDATION. You have a right to vote without being intimidated or forced to vote for anyone you don’t wish to vote for. NCGS 163-271

Source: North Carolina State Board of Elections website

« View All Articles