Whether you’re a first-time voter, a new Maryland resident or maybe just a devotee of Taylor Swift’s Instagram account, the deadline to register to vote in Maryland’s November midterm elections is Oct. 16.
(Though Marylanders can also register to vote — and vote that same day — during early voting.)
So how does one go about registering?
To qualify to register in Maryland, one must be a U.S. citizen, a resident of the state and at least 16 years old, though the legal age to cast a vote is 18.
Maryland registrants can not be convicted of buying or selling votes, be under guardianship for a mental disability and found by a court to be unable to communicate a desire to vote or be serving a court-ordered sentence for a felony conviction. (Voting rights were granted in 2016 for Maryland residents with felony charges who have completed prison sentences.)
Residents should also be prepared to provide a driver’s license, state identification or learner’s permit number or, in some cases, the last four digits of a social security number.
Here’s how to register:
Those with a Maryland driver’s license, learner’s permit or state identification can register to vote online at the Maryland State Board of Elections website.
A resident who does not have a Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration-issued identification must register by mail or in person. Paper applications cannot be faxed or emailed, because the document requires an original signature.
Marylanders who prefer to take to pen and paper can fill out the voter registration application, available on the Maryland State Board of Elections website, and mail in the form to the county board of elections.
Addresses for each of Maryland’s county board of elections are located on the second page of the application, which must be filled out in black ink.
Applications can be filled out at the following locations, according to the Maryland Board of Elections website.
« Your local board of elections
« The State Board of Elections
« The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
« The Department of Social Services
« The Motor Vehicle Administration
« Offices on Aging« The MTA Paratransit Certification Office
« All public institutions of higher education
« Recruitment offices of the U.S. Armed Forces
« Marriage license offices
« Offices for students with disabilities at all Maryland colleges and universities.
« During early voting, at your polling place. (You can register and vote the same day)
Other notable dates
« Early voting: Oct. 25-Nov. 1
« General election: Nov. 6
« Deadline to request an absentee ballot: Oct. 30 if you want to receive it by mail; Nov. 2 if you want to download the ballot online