Dos & Dont's of Hosting a Voter Registration Drive

Go to the "Voter Registration Instructions for all 50 States" tab for specfics on any state and links to states' voter web sites.

Dos

  • Use the national voter registration form and national voter registration form instructions, except for states of  NH, ND and WY which use state-specific forms that can be found on those states' voter sites (links to sites provided in "Voter Registration Instructions for all 50 States") or by calling the number provided for the state in the instructions. The national voter registration form and instructions are available in multiple languages at www.eac.gov/voter_resources/register_to_vote.aspx.
  • Return all completed registration forms to the appropriate state or local election authority immediately. Failing to do so, destroying a form, falsifying forms, etc. can result in criminal penalties. Please note that each state may have additional, state-specific deadlines for returning forms (ex: completed registration forms in Ohio must be returned within ten days). 
  • Allow voters the option to mail in their own forms if they choose: if an individual wants to mail in his or her own form, that’s perfectly fine, and he or she should be given that option.
  • Stay non-partisan. Some states prohibit those registering others from displaying support for a candidate/party. 
  • Offer a voter registration form to everyone!  Reasons for needing to register or re-register include, but are not limited to, never having voted before, not voting in a while, a name change, moving, completing punishment for a felony (rules vary by state), clerical errors and even being purged from the rolls by mistake.
  • Get questions answered. Contact your District Rapid Response Coordinator, Congressional District Coordinator (PA) or the Rapid Response Toll-Free Voter Registration Hotline at 866-340-9279.

Don’ts

  • Do not copy or take data from a completed form, it is against the law in many states. 
  • Do not pre-fill any fields on voter registration forms or add any markings to a voter registration form. Do not add any printer’s marks, such as a union bug, when making copies of a blank voter registration form.
  • Do not give something of value away to get someone to register to vote, vote, or vote a certain way, that is called "vote buying" and it is prohibitted by the Voting Rights Act. Because the Department of Justice interprets the cost of postage as “facilitating” voter registration, mailing in registration forms is not considered "vote buying;" therefore it is legal and acceptable to mail in voter registration forms to appropriate state entities for registrants.