Wisconsin Elections Calendar
  • Spring Nonpartisan Primary-Tuesday, February 21
  • Spring Nonpartisan Election-Tuesday, April 4
Voting Information


    » The next election in Wisconsin is the Spring Primary Election on February 21, 2017.  Polls open at 7am and close at 8pm.

    » Voters must be registered to vote (see VOTER REGISTRATION, below). You may register to vote at the polls on Election Day.

    » Voters who move within 10 days before the election must vote at the poll from their previous address (in person or by requesting an absentee ballot).

    » Voters must present a voter photo ID. Be sure you have an eligible ID!  More on Voter Photo ID.

    » Voters must sign or make their mark on the poll book to obtain a ballot before voting. Voters who are unable to sign the poll book because of a disability are exempt from this requirement.


    Request a mailed absentee ballot from your city, town, or village clerk in writing by mail, fax, or e-mail. The request must be made no later than 5pm on the Thursday before the election (November 3, 2016, for the fall election) in order for an absentee ballot to be sent to you. Your request must include:

  • Your name.
  • The address where you are registered to vote.
  • The address where the ballot should be sent.
  • Your signature
  • A photocopy of an acceptable photo ID for voting (see VOTER PHOTO ID)

Absentee ballots
are mailed 3 weeks before local (spring) elections and 47 days before national (fall) elections.

Elderly or disabled voters who have requested to be on the permanent absentee ballot list must vote in each election or they will be dropped from the absentee ballot rolls.
  Upon receiving the absentee ballot:
  • Complete it.
  • Sign the certificate envelope in the presence of a witness.
  • Have a witness sign the envelope and write their address.
  • Seal the envelope.
  • Mail the completed ballot so that it is received by the clerks office no later than Election Day. 
  • If you fail to follow the directions about signature and witness or if the ballot is received after Election Day, the ballot is not valid and cannot be counted.



Who can vote?

  • You must be a United States citizen, age 18 or older by Election Day, and live at your current address for at least 10 days before the election.
  • You must be registered to vote (see VOTER REGISTRATION, below).
  • Former felons can vote if they have completed their sentence, including probation, parole, or extended supervision by the Department of Corrections (also called being “off paper”).
  • You must have a valid voter photo ID to vote at the polling place and to obtain some absentee ballots (see VOTER PHOTO ID).

What if you don't have a photo ID acceptable for voting?

  • If you are eligible to vote but do not have a valid voter photo ID, you may obtain a free Wisconsin ID card for voting (see VOTER PHOTO ID).

Where do you vote?

  • Your polling place is determined by the municipality of your permanent residence. For example, your mailing address may be Madison, but your municipality may be the Town of Dunn.
  • Go to https://myvote.wi.gov/ or call your municipal clerk.
  • Students may vote from their family home address if that is their permanent residence, or from their school residence. See VOTING ABSENTEE BY MAIL (above) if away during an election.
  • If you have lived at your current residence for less than 10 days, vote at your old address.

What if you can’t get to the polling place on Election Day? (See VOTING ABSENTEE BY MAIL, above)

  • You do not need a reason for absentee voting.
  • Request a mailed absentee ballot from your city, town, or village clerk in writing by mail, fax, or e-mail.
  • Elderly and disabled individuals can request a permanent absentee ballot.
  • You may vote early in person—at the clerk’s office or another site designated by the clerk. Dates and hours for early voting may vary, so check with your local clerk. 

What if you are in the hospital? (See VOTING ABSENTEE BY MAIL, above)

  •     Each hospitalized voter can request a ballot (in writing), and the voter may appoint an agent to pick up the ballot from the hospitalized voter’s clerk’s office. Contact your local clerk. If you know you will be in the hospital, request a regular absentee ballot in advance.


How do you register to vote?

  • You must present proof of residence to register to vote (see PROOF OF RESIDENCE, below).
  • You must register again if you move.
  • If you have been issued a WI driver’s license or WI DOT-issued ID that is current and valid, you must provide the number and expiration date. If you have not been issued a WI driver’s license or WI DOT-issued ID, you must provide the last 4 digits of your Social Security number.
  • If it is more than 20 days before an election, you may register to vote:
    • with any citizen who is a Special Registration Deputy for your municipality.
    • at your municipal clerk's office or Election Commission office if you live in Milwaukee
    • at any library in your municipality  
  • You may also complete a registration form online, print it, sign it, and mail it with your proof of residence to your municipal clerk.
  • Starting 20 days before an election (from closing time October 19th, 2016), you can only register in person in your city, town, or village clerk’s office, until closing time on the Friday before an election.
  • If you register at the clerk’s office in after early voting has begun in your municipality, you may vote at the same time (in-person absentee voting).
  • You may also register at the polls on Election Day.


The paper or electronic document must include your name and current home address.

  • A current and valid WI driver’s license or WI photo ID card.
  • Any other official identification card or license issued by a Wisconsin governmental body or unit.  
  • A real estate tax bill or receipt for the current year or the year preceding the date of the election.
  • A utility bill for the period commencing not earlier than 90 days before registering.
  • A bank or credit union statement.
  • A paycheck or pay stub.
  • A check or other document issued by any government agency or public school.
  • Homeless voters can prove their voting address with an affidavit from a social service agency.
  • A residential lease valid on date of registration (not valid if registering by mail).
  • A university or college ID card if accompanied by a fee statement for the current semester.

Copyright League of Women Voters of Wisconsin