Frequently Asked Questions About Voting

For answers to frequently asked questions about voter registration, click here.

You can always check your voter status, find your polling location, verify your vote by mail ballot request, see your sample ballot, and more on our voter portal.

Don't see your question? Email it to us so we can answer it and add it to our website! You can reach us at elections@co.champaign.il.us.

LETTER FROM THE SECRETARY OF STATE: If you have received a letter from the Secretary of State about filling out a vote by mail application, don't worry. If you do not want to vote by mail you are not obligated to do so. Just disregard the letter. If you do want to vote by mail then request your ballot through our online voter portal. If you received that letter and you did fill out an application for vote by mail, again, don't worry, you're fine. The mailing list for the letter was put together in the end of August, if you made a request after that, you would have still received the letter. Please be advised that the SOS is required by law to send the letter twice (again in October) so the same information above will apply to the 2nd letter as well.

WHERE IS MY POLLING LOCATION? CAN I VOTE ANYWHERE?

You can look up your polling location here or you can vote at any of our universal polling locations which are also listed above.

DO I NEED ID/VOTER REGISTRATION CARD TO VOTE?

If you are a first-time voter or need to change any of your voting information, it’s best to take a picture ID and a piece of mail with your current address.

Voter registration cards are not needed to vote.

I LIVE HERE PART OF THE YEAR AND SOMEWHERE ELSE PART OF THE YEAR, CAN I VOTE AT BOTH PLACES?

No, you cannot. Pick one address to be registered at and vote in that district.

I RECEIVED A VOTE BY MAIL APPLICATION FROM A THIRD PARTY. DO I HAVE TO USE IT?

No, you do not have to use that application. You can if you want. We encourage you to request your vote by mail application on our website here.

I AM ON THE REGISTERED SEX OFFENDER LIST, WHERE CAN I VOTE?

Elections do not preempt laws that restrict access to individuals on the sex offender registry. The best option is to vote by mail or to vote at the Clerk’s Office.

IS VOTE BY MAIL SAFE?

Vote by mail has been around since the Civil War and is a safe and reliable way to vote. Vote by mail used to be called “Absentee” but now any eligible voter can vote by mail/vote at home. States all across the U.S. are almost entirely vote by mail because of the cost savings, security, and ease of voting.  There are numerous checks and balances in place throughout the entire vote by mail process to ensure complete transparency, integrity and accuracy.

Vote by mail uses the same machines for ballot printing, tabulation, voter verification and checking in as in-person voting and all machines are developed and governed by strict federal rules.

ARE VOTE BY MAIL BALLOTS DIFFERENT THAN IN-PERSON BALLOTS?

Not at all. You would vote for the same offices as if you voted in-person.

HOW WILL I KNOW IF MY BALLOT IS COUNTED?

Ballots are checked in, verified, and cast by a 3-judge panel with judges from both parties. This ensures everything is done according to statue and accurately. If you log into My Voter Information, it will tell you when your ballot has been received by the Clerk's Office. If there is anything that would prevent your ballot from being cast, the Clerk’s Office would contact you immediately to rectify the issue.

WHAT IF MY BALLOT IS REJECTED? THEN WHAT HAPPENS?

If there is anything that would prevent your ballot from being cast, the Clerk’s Office would contact you immediately to rectify the issue and you would have 14 days from election day to resolve the issue.

WHY ARE PEOPLE SAYING THEY GOT MORE THAN ONE BALLOT IN THE MAIL?

Duplicate ballots occur in vote by mail. It’s a precaution of making sure the voter gets their ballot. There is no need for alarm. The duplicate ballot can be returned to the Clerk’s Office with duplicate written across the top. There is no possibility of a voter being able to vote more than once because they received duplicate ballots. Once a ballot is returned it is immediately scanned into the system as returned. Any additional ballots for the same voter would be flagged as duplicates and not counted.

CAN I PICK UP MY VOTE BY MAIL BALLOT IN-PERSON?

No, that would defeat the safety benefits of utilizing vote by mail. Once you request your ballot you will be able to track its progress to you and if you don’t want to mail it back, you can use a drop box location to return it.

WHAT IS A DROP BOX?

Drop boxes are secure drop sites where voters can return their vote by mail ballot and it will be picked up by elections judges, not go through the postal service. There are 7 drop boxes in Champaign-Urbana. They are open 24/7 but if you are returning your ballot on November 3rd, it must be in the drop box before 7PM.

The boxes are quarter inch steel with anti-theft components. They are securely attached to cement pads in the ground. Designed so no water can leak into the box. The slit for envelopes is very narrow and is constructed so no one can access ballots once they have been placed in the ballot box. These boxes are used throughout the country to secure vote by mail ballots. The boxes are emptied daily by a Democratic and Republican election judge where they are driven directly back to the Clerk’s Office and secured.

DROP BOX LOCATIONS

24-Hour Locations

  • Brookens Administration Building, 1776 E Washington St, Urbana, in the circle drive
  • Champaign Public Library, 200 W Green, Champaign, north of the mailbox on State Street
  • Champaign Public Library-Douglass Branch, 504 E Grove, Champaign, in the circle drive
  • Champaign-Urbana Public Health District, 201 W Kenyon Rd, Champaign, in the east parking lot
  • Sholem Pool, 2205 Sangamon Dr, Champaign, at the top of the circle drive
  • Urbana Public Library, 210 W Green, Urbana, in the circle drive
  • University of Illinois Quad, 1401 W Green St, northwest corner, accessible by foot or bike only

Drive & Drop Dates, Times, & Locations

Every Saturday in October from 1-3PM at these locations. Drive up and drop you ballot off with Election Judges.

  • Lake of the Woods, Elk’s Pavilion, 301 Senna Drive, Mahomet, IL 61853
  • Rantoul Township Building, 121 N Garrard, Rantoul, IL 61866
  • Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, 802 East Douglas Street, St. Joseph, IL 61873
  • Tolono Public Library, 111 East Main Street, Tolono, IL 61880
I REQUESTED A VOTE BY MAIL BALLOT AND RECEIVED BUT CHANGED MY MIND. I WANT TO VOTE IN PERSON.

You can do that. Take your vote by mail ballot with you to your polling place, surrender it to the Election Judge, and they will issue you a new ballot. However, we do encourage you to use your vote by mail ballot. It is safer for everyone. If you're not comfortable mailing it back, you can use a drop box, described in the question above.

I REQUESTED A BALLOT AND NEVER GOT IT. NOW WHAT?

Give us a call and we can verify your address and status of your request. You can reach us at 217-384-3724.

*If the election is less than 48 hours away, we strongly suggest you simply vote in-person at your regular precinct or any of the 12 universal sites listed at the top of the page.

I DON'T THINK THE BALLOT I RECEIVED IS CORRECT. WHAT SHOULD I DO?

Give us a call and we can verify your address and ballot style. You can reach us at 217-384-3724.

CAN I HELP A FRIEND OR FAMILY MEMBER COMPLETE THEIR VOTE BY MAIL BALLOT?
Yes, you can. Just completed the “Did You Get Help?” section on the orange return envelope.

 

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