REGAINING THE RIGHT TO VOTE
Following a criminal conviction, some states automatically restore a person's eligibility to register and vote in elections. Others require the individual to
complete an additional process. Because each state or territory is different in its requirements and procedures, the best source of reliable information is the
appropriate agency or office for the state in which you are interested.
Listed below are web site for each state or territory. Where a state has posted
specific information regarding the process by which individual can have his or her
rights restored, the link is to that information. If not, we have provided the
link to more general voter registration information for the state. These web site addresses are current as of May 1, 2009.
This links to the Alabama Board of Pardons and Paroles, which hears and grants
requests for restoration of voting rights. The website provides background
information and contact information for Board staff.
This links to the Parole Board at the Department of Corrections. The Parole Board
must make recommendations regarding clemency applications to the Governor. The site provides guidance regarding requesting executive clemency, including a Clemency
The first link is to the Arizona Board of Executive Clemency, which recommends clemency decisions to the Governor. The second link is to the Superior Court of Maricopa
County's application for restoration of civil rights. The voting rights for first-time offenders are restored automatically, while repeat offenders can regain
voting rights through judicial restoration or gubernatorial pardon.
This links to the Arkansas Parole Board, which handles clemency appeals, and frequently asked questions site maintained by Arkansas Secretary of State. The site notes that voting rights are automatically restored after discharge of a felon's sentence, completion of parole, or a pardon from the Governor.
This links to the Secretary of State's frequently asked questions site describing restoration of voting rights and voter registration process for felons.
This links to the frequently asked questions part of the "voting
and convictions" section informing felons that voting rights are automatically upon completion of sentence.
The links to the Connecticut voter registration application, which notes that
voting rights are restored by local registrar, which are restored upon release from incarceration, payment of any fines, and the end of any period of parole.
This links to further information regarding restoration of voting rights for some felonies and lists basic restoration criteria.
District of Columbia
This links to the District of Columbia's voter registration form, which indicates that only currently incarcerated felons are ineligible to register to vote.
The links to a frequently asked questions site describing the process and eligibility criteria for restoration of rights, which is overseen by the Florida
Parole Commission. The rights of persons who have completed their terms of
incarceration or any supervised release programs and who have never been convicted of specified crimes, including certain types of sexual and violent offenses, are automatically restored. Others must apply for restoration as per the procedures set
out by the Florida Parole Commission.
This links to the Georgia State Board Pardons and Paroles Frequently Asked Question
site, which notes that voting rights are restored automatically upon completion of sentence, including probation.
This links to a fact sheet on the impact of felony conviction on voting
rights in Hawaii where persons serving felony sentences cannot vote if they currently imprisoned, but can vote when released, including when on parole or probation.
This links to a frequently asked questions site noting that persons
convicted of felonies can vote upon restoration of their civil rights, which are automatically restored upon completion of sentence, including probation or parole.
This links to a site providing voter information. Those persons who are currently
imprisoned after conviction of a crime are ineligible to vote. All others may register to vote, and those imprisoned pending trial may request absentee ballots.
This links to the state voter handbook, which notes that only those imprisoned after conviction are ineligible to register to vote. Those incarcerated before conviction, on parole, or probation or who have served their sentence may register
The Iowa Governor's office automatically restores voting rights of those individuals
who have completed their sentence, including any period or parole or probation. The voting rights of those who completed their sentence prior to July 4, 2005 were automatically restored, while the Governor's office automatically files an application for restoration of voting rights for those who complete their sentence after this date.
This links to the Kentucky Justice and Public Safety Cabinet (JPSC) which, under
the "How do I..." section of the site, provides a link to the Application for the Restoration of Civil Rights and information the return of the completed application.
Louisiana does not have a specific page on restoration but this link directs you
to the Louisiana Secretary of State Elections Division voter information page.
Here, the link sets forth that, in order to register to vote, an individual must
not be under an order of imprisonment for conviction of a felony and provides a
link for a voter registration application form.
Maine does not have specific page on restoration, so this link directs you to
the page on voter eligibility where there is the statement that a person who is incarcerated can register to vote in the municipality where they had previously established their residency if they intent to return there.
This links to the Maryland State Board of Elections voter rights
restoration page which states that if you have been convicted of a felony and have completed serving a court-ordered sentence of imprisonment, including any term of
parole or probation for the conviction, you are eligible to register to vote.
Massachusetts does not have a specific page on restoration, so this link will
take you to the Massachusetts Elections Division of the Secretary of State's page,
which lists the eligibility requirements for registering to vote. The list does
identify having been convicted of a felony and not having completing one's
sentence as disqualifying.
This links to the Department of State's Election and Voting Section's
frequently asked question section, which note that residents in pre-trial
confinement may vote, but those serving a sentence post-conviction are ineligible
to vote during the period of confinement.
This links to the Minnesota Secretary of State's web page where the
link to registering to voter informs you that you may register to vote if you
have had any felony conviction record discharged, expired, or completed.
Mississippi not have a specific page on restoration but this link takes you to the Mississippi Secretary of State web page where you can find information regarding registering to vote and election contacts.
This links to the Missouri Secretary of State voter information page which states that you may not vote while confined under a sentence of imprisonment, while on
probation or parole after the conviction of a felony, or after conviction of a
felony or misdemeanor connected with voting or the right of suffrage.
This links to the Montana Secretary of State's frequently asked
questions on voter information page which notes that you may not vote if you are a person, who has been convicted of a felony and is serving a sentence in a penal institution.
This links to the Nebraska Secretary of State's frequently asked questions on voter information page which notes that you may not vote if you have been convicted
of a felony, or if convicted, at least two years have passed since the completion
of your sentence for the felony including any parole term.
This links to the Nevada Secretary of State restoration of voter
rights page which provides detailed information regarding documentation requirements
for former felons who have served out their sentence and are attempting to register
New Hampshire does not have a specific page on restoration so this links to the New Hampshire Secretary of State Election Division's web site which provides information for voter registration.
This links to the New Jersey Division of Elections' "Who Can Register"
page which notes that you may not vote if you are serving a sentence, on parole,
or on probation as a result of a conviction of an indictable offense under state or federal law.
This links to the New Mexico Secretary of State's web site which notes
that a voter's registration is terminated following the conviction of a felony,
but that he or she is eligible to reinstate their registration after completion
of their term.
This links to the New York State Board of Elections voting page, which notes
that you may not vote if you are in jail or on parole for a felony conviction.
This links to the North Carolina State Board of Elections' web page. Here
you can access "Voter Registration Quick Facts" link, which states that if you have previously been convicted of a felony, you must have completed all parts of your sentence, including probation and parole, and then your citizenship rights are automatically restored and are permitted to register and vote.
North Dakota does not have a specific page on restoration, so this links to the North Dakota Secretary of State's website, which provides general election information, including voter registration guidelines.
This links to an Advisory issued by the Ohio Secretary of State on
the voting rights of persons convicted of a felony.
This links to general voter registration information, which notes that those
convicted of a felony may not register until their sentence has expired.
Oregon does not have a specific page on restoration, so this links to the Oregon Secretary of State's Election Division website, which provides general election information, including voter registration guidelines.
This links to a report by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania"s Department
of State regarding the voting rights of person who have completed their felony
Puerto Rico does not have a specific page on restoration, so this links to the Puerto Rico Election Commission's website, which provides general Spanish-language election information, including voter registration guidelines.
This links to the Rhode Island Secretary of State's web page, which states that due
to a change in the state law persons who have been convicted of a felony may vote,
even if they are on probation or parole. The page also provides links to
general election information, including voter registration guidelines.
This links to the South Carolina's State Election Commission's Voter Registration site. The Who Can Register link gives specific information relating to the voting
rights of persons convicted of felonies.
South Dakota does not have a specific page on restoration, so this links to the South Dakota Secretary of State's website, which provides general election information, including voter registration guidelines. The site notes that persons currently "serving a sentence for a felony conviction which included imprisonment,
served or suspended, in an adult penitentiary system" may not vote.
This links to the Tennessee Department of State and offers guidance on how persons
who have completed their felony sentences can regain their voting rights.
Texas does not have a specific page on restoration, so this links to
the Texas Secretary of State's website, which provides general election information, including voter registration guidelines.
Utah does not have a specific page on restoration, so this links to
Utah's Lieutenant Governor's website, which provides general election information, including voter registration guidelines.
Vermont does not have a specific page on restoration, so this links to the Vermont Secretary of State's website, which provides general election information, including voter registration guidelines.
This links to the Secretary of the Commonwealth's website which provides specific information regarding the restoration of votng rights for persons who have
completed their felony sentence.
The Virgin Islands web site does not have a specific page on restoration, so this
links to its Election System web page site, which provides general election
information, including voter registration guidelines.
This links to the Washington's Secretary of State's website, which contains specific information about the voting rights of those who have been convicted of
West Virginia does not have a specific page on restoration, so this links to
the West Virginia Secretary of State website, which provides general election information, including voter registration guidelines.
Wisconsin does not have a specific page on restoration, so this links to a Wisconsin state government page's frequently asked questions, which includes general election information, including voter registration guidelines.
This links to the Wyoming Bureau of Prison's website, which provides information regarding the restoration of voting rights for individuals who have
completed a felony sentence.
This links to the Department of Justice's Office of the Pardon Attorney,
and provides information regarding clemency regulations, petitions, and statistics.