Know Your Voting Rights

Know Your Voting Rights

Información en español

Graphic that says "know your voting rights"Boulder County Elections is dedicated to facilitating positive and accessible elections for all voters. Toward this end, our office is launching a “Know Your Voting Rights” campaign with voting information intended to support the diverse experiences, identities, and backgrounds of Boulder County voters.

Our team is committed to proactively affirming every eligible voter’s right to vote and to fostering a voting experience that is inclusive and celebrates voters of all backgrounds. Please share this page with individuals, non-profits, and groups that serve historically excluded identities so that every eligible voter has what they need to participate this fall. And never hesitate to reach out with any questions. We are here to help and support you!

You are eligible to vote in Colorado if you:

  • Are a U.S. citizen
  • Are at least 18-years-old as of election day (Nov 8, 2022)
  • Have lived in Colorado for at least 22 days
  • And, must not be serving a sentence of confinement or detention for a felony conviction (NOTE: Those on probation or parole ARE ELIGIBLE to vote.)

You have the right to vote if you:

You do not need to speak English or be fluent in English in order to vote in Colorado.

There are several voter services dedicated to multilingual speakers including:

  • A Spanish language Sample Ballot available online during election periods at boco.org/votar
  • Ability to request to vote a ballot in Spanish for in-person voting at any Vote Center
  • A statewide Multilingual Ballot Hotline providing access to a qualified interpreter for assistance with translating the ballot content live in Spanish, Korean, Chinese, Taiwanese or Vietnamese and many more languages. Service is available by calling the Secretary of State’s office at 303-860-6970
    • Oct 17 – Nov 4 (Monday – Friday) between 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
    • Nov 7 & 8 (Election Day) – 7 a.m. – 7 p.m.
    • Additionally, you may visit a Vote Center in person where an election judge can assist you with connecting you to a live interpreter for language assistance.

For more information or assistance:

Individuals who are involved in the criminal justice system are eligible to vote in Colorado, provided they are not currently serving a sentence of incarceration or detention for a felony conviction.

This means you can vote even if you are:

  • Currently on parole for a felony conviction
  • In jail and awaiting trial
  • Serving a sentence for a misdemeanor conviction
  • On bond and the criminal case is pending
  • On probation
  • Have a felony criminal conviction in your past but have finished serving your sentence
  • Are still paying restitution

If you are currently in jail and eligible to vote:

  • Update your registration to list the jail as your mailing address.
  • Contact the Support Service Sergeant to access paper registration forms and coordinate dropping off your ballot.

Registering to vote once you have finished serving a sentence for a felony conviction:

  • Voter registrations are canceled for those entering incarceration/detention for a felony conviction. Therefore, you must re-register even if you were registered to vote before your incarceration/detention.
  • Visit our Voter Registration page for information about how to register/re-register to vote.
  • Once you have finished your sentence, your name may still appear in the state database as as an individual who is incarcerated/detained for a felony conviction. Your name will be removed, but it may take some time. If this happens, you may need to provide proof to a county elections official that you have completed your sentence before you are permitted to register.

For more information or assistance:

There are many forms of Acceptable ID.

Common examples of acceptable ID other than a Colorado driver’s license or state ID include:

  • A valid U.S. passport
  • A copy of a current (within last 60 days) utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, or government check showing your name and address
  • A valid Medicare/Medicaid card
  • A valid photo student ID card from a Colorado institute of higher education, such as a CU Buff OneCard
  • Certified documentation of naturalization
  • A valid government employee/veteran photo ID
  • For other options, see the Secretary of State’s list of Acceptable Forms of ID.

Note: if your ID shows an address, it must be a Colorado address (not out of state). For driver’s licenses/state IDs, the address shown does not need to be current (you could have moved since). For utility bills/bank statements, however, your address must be current.

When you will need to provide ID:

  • Registering to vote – ID is not required to register to vote. However, the first time you submit a mail ballot you may be required to provide a copy of your ID (again, many choices besides a drivers license).
  • Voting in person – You will need to provide an acceptable form of ID any time you vote in person.

For more information or assistance:

Having a permanent residence is not required to vote in Colorado.

Instructions for providing addresses when registering to vote:

  • A residential address is NOT required when registering to vote. Instead, you may use any physical location as your residence, such as a park, vacant lot, homeless shelter, campground, or RV park.
  • A mailing address IS required when registering to vote. If you cannot receive mail at your residential address, you must provide a valid mailing address where you can receive a ballot.
  • A Post Office Box or Private Mailbox may not be used for your residential address, but it may be used for your mailing address.

For more information or assistance:

You have the right to vote in Colorado using accessible voting equipment.

Voting options for individuals who are in need of accessible or ADA-compliant voting equipment:

  • Vote in person at any Boulder County Vote Center during election periods. By law, Vote Centers must provide equipment and facilities for persons with disabilities. Additionally, Vote Center staff use this Periodic Accessibility Checklist to ensure that the areas surrounding and inside Vote Centers remain accessible.
  • Vote by Accessing a Downloadable Ballot via Secure Online Platform (additional affidavits apply; must attest to ADA need under penalty of perjury)
    • During the 22 days before and on Election Day, you can access the secure ballot return website a ballot at myballot.sos.colorado.gov. You will be guided through step-by-step instructions to complete and return your ballot via a secure online platform.

For more information or assistance:

You can vote even if you are not present in your home county.

Options:

  • Vote by mail ballot – You have until 8-days (Oct 31, 2022) prior to an election to update your voter registration record if you need your ballot mailed to a different location than your residential address (don’t forget to remove or update your mailing address after the election). Once you receive your ballot, if it after the recommended deadline (Oct 31) use a 24-hour drop box to return your mail ballot up until 7 p.m. on Election Day. Every county clerk in Colorado (including our office) ensures that out-of-county ballots are returned to their home county to be counted.
  • Vote in person at a Vote Center (ideally in your home county, but you can vote in any Colorado Vote Center) – If you do not receive your home county mail ballot and/or miss the deadline to change your mailing address, you may always travel to your home county and vote in person at a Vote Center.
    • If you are unable to get back to your home county, you may visit any Vote Center in Colorado and request a Statewide Ballot. The Statewide Ballot contains the names of candidates for statewide federal offices, state offices, and statewide ballot issues and ballot questions, but no local contests or measures.

For more information or assistance:

Your gender presentation does not need to match the gender listed on your ID.

When do I need to show ID & what type of ID is needed?

  • You will be required to present ID when voting in person at a Vote Center or if your mail ballot is marked “ID required.” See the Secretary of State’s list of Acceptable Forms of ID.
    • Note: if your ID shows an address, it must be a Colorado address (not out of state). For driver’s licenses/state IDs, the address shown does not need to be current (you could have moved since). For utility bills/bank statements, however, the address shown must be current.
  • Election judges confirm identity by a variety of criteria defined in state law / rule. This does include a name match, but it does not include gender presentation. Contact our office if you have changed your name and need it updated in your voter registration.

For more information or assistance:

In Colorado, employees are entitled to take up to 2 hours of leave to participate in elections.

Here are the details:

  • You must be eligible to vote.
  • You are entitled to take up to 2 hours of voting leave during times that Vote Centers are open. You can use your voting time to vote, register to vote, obtain a ballot or replacement ballot, or obtain documents or identification necessary to vote or register.
  • If you are paid by the hour, your employer must pay for your voting time.
  • Your employer may not penalize or discharge you for being absent for voting time.
  • You must request your leave of absence prior to Election Day.
  • Your employer may specify the hours during which you can be absent, but they must honor a request that your time off be at the beginning or end of your work shift.
  • Exceptions: Your employer may deny a request for leave if your shift begins at least 3 hours after the polls open or ends at least 3 hours before the polls close.

For more information or assistance:

You can vote while living away from home during college.

In most cases, college students can choose whether to register to vote (or stay registered to vote) in their hometown or to change their registration to their new residence.

It is important to know that a registered voter in Colorado is considered a resident of Colorado for income tax purposes and for motor vehicle registration/operation purposes. To register to vote in Colorado, you must be a resident for at least 22 days before the election.

Colorado residents going to college out of state:

Colorado residents going to college in another part of Colorado (and living there):

  • You may either register to vote (or keep your voter registration) at your hometown address or re-register in the jurisdiction where you are attending school.
  • Your voter registration address determines some of the content you will see on your ballot.
  • If you are keeping your registration at your hometown address, be sure to update your voter registration with your current mailing address so your mail ballot can find you.
  • CU students living on campus – see our Student Voting Guidelines page for specific instructions on registering to vote and/or updating your mailing address.

Out-of-state students going to college in Colorado:

  • You may choose either to register to vote (or stay registered to vote) in your home state or register in Colorado. To register in Colorado, you must be a resident for at least 22 days before the election.
  • If you are temporarily residing in Colorado, you may wish to register (or remain registered) to vote in your home state and request an absentee ballot (if permitted by your home state).
  • If you choose to register in Colorado, you will be considered a resident of Colorado for motor vehicle registration and operation purposes and for income tax purposes.
  • CU students living on campus – see our Student Voting Guidelines page for specific instructions on registering to vote and/or updating your mailing address.

For more information or assistance:

Posters/Handouts

Know Your Voting Rights – Downloadable Poster/Handout in English

Know Your Voting Rights – Downloadable Poster/Handout in Spanish

Denial of Voting Services or Similar Experience

If you experience denial of voting services or an unpleasant voting experience in Boulder County, please report it to our office (Boulder County Elections Division) at 303-413-7740 or the Colorado Secretary of State’s office at 303-894-2200.

First-time Voters

New to Colorado? Just turned 18 and excited to cast your first ballot? Head over to our New Voters page to find everything you need to know to participate in Boulder County elections.

Rides to Vote

While our office does not provide transportation to Vote Centers, our locations are strategically planned along public transportation routes. Additionally, many non-profits offer free rides to the polls.

Emergency Replacement Ballots

You may use an Emergency Replacement Ballot (ERB) if you are unable to vote your original mail ballot due to:

  • Confinement in a hospital or residence.
  • An immediate family member’s confinement in a hospital or residence.
  • Emergency conditions like fire, flood or other catastrophic event.
  • There are a handful of other exceptions, call our office for details.

ERBs will be available for the 2022 General Election starting November 1st. To get an ERB, you must contact our office before 5 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 8.

Contact Us

Elections Division

303-413-7740

303-413-7728 (Fax)

Email
www.BoulderCountyVotes.org

**New as of Jan 4, 2021**
7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Mon-Thurs.
CLOSED Fridays

Location

Boulder: 1750 33rd Street (main office)
Map & Directions

Longmont: 529 Coffman Street*
Map & Directions

Lafayette: 1376 Miners Drive*
Map & Directions
*Only offers paper voter registration forms

Mailing Address

1750 33rd Street, Suite 200
Boulder, CO 80301