General Voting Information
For detailed information, please visit our Calendar of Election Dates page.
A General Election is held in November of every even-numbered year. The Primary Election for nominating party nominees for the General Election is 10 weeks before the General Election. Additionally, a Presidential Preference Primary is held in Presidential Election years. Special elections may be called at any time during the year. The election dates for 2016 are:
|Presidential Preference Primary Election||March 15, 2016|
|Primary Election........||August 30, 2016|
|General Election........||November 8, 2016|
Voter Registration Book Closing DatesBack
You can register to vote at any time. However, to vote in an upcoming election, you must be registered by the deadline to register which is 29 days before the election. The registration deadlines for the 2016 election cycle are:
|Presidential Preference Primary Election||February 16, 2016|
|Primary Election........||August 1, 2016|
|General Election........||October 1, 2016|
Florida is a closed primary state. Only voters who are registered members of political parties may vote for respective party candidates for an office in a primary election.
However, there are times when all registered voters can vote in a primary election, regardless of which major or minor political party they are registered or even if they are registered without a specific party affiliation:
- If all the candidates for an office have the same party affiliation and the winner of the primary election will not face any opposition in the general election (i.e. no write-in candidates have qualified), then all registered voters can vote for any of the candidates for that office in the primary election.
- If races for nonpartisan (i.e., free from party affiliation) judicial and school board offices, nonpartisan special districts or local referendum questions are on the primary election ballot, then all registered voters, including those without party affiliation are entitled to vote those races on the ballot.
At a general election, all registered voters receive the same ballot and may vote for any candidate or question on the ballot. If there are write-in candidates who have qualified for a particular office, a space will be left on the ballot where their name can be written.
How to Make Name, Address and Party Affiliation ChangesBack
If your name changes by marriage or other legal process, submit the change in a signed written notice such as a voter registration application to your Supervisor of Elections. It must include your date of birth or voter registration number.
If you move within a county after you have registered to vote, please notify your Supervisor of Elections. You may make the change in person, by phone or other electronic means or by other signed, written notice (e.g., Florida Voter Registration Application). You must provide your date of birth.
If you move to another Florida county, you must use the Florida Voter Registration Application(English / Español) to change your address. However, if you provide the information directly to your Supervisor of Elections of the county of new residence, you may make the change in person, by phone or other electronic means or by other signed, written notice (e.g., Florida Voter Registration Application). You must provide your date of birth.
Federal and State laws require you to vote in your precinct of residence.
Party Affiliation Changes
You can change your party affiliation by any signed written notice such as a voter registration application. It must include your date of birth or voter registration number. All party changes for a primary election must be made by the registration deadline which is 29 days before the primary election. For a general election, a party change can be made at any time.
Florida law allows all qualified voters to request an absentee ballot from the Supervisor of Elections. A member of the voter's immediate family or legal guardian may also request an absentee ballot for a voter, if directly instructed to do so by the voter. The request can cover all elections through the end of the calendar year for the second ensuing regularly scheduled general election. A request for an absentee ballot to be mailed must be made no later than 5 p.m. on the 6th day before an election. Contact your Supervisor of Electionsto request an absentee ballot. Refer to the Division of Elections' webpage on Absentee Voting for more details.
Voters may vote in person by casting a ballot prior to Election Day. The voter will use the same type of voting equipment that is used at the polls on Election Day. Early voting, at a minimum, must begin on the 10th day before an election that contains state or federal races and end on the 3rd day before the election, and shall be provided for no less than 8 hours and no more than 12 hours per day at each site during the applicable period. In addition, early voting may be offered at the discretion of the supervisor of elections on the 15th, 14th, 13th, 12th, 11th, or 2nd day before an election that contains state or federal races for at least 8 hours per day, but not more than 12 hours per day. Refer to the Division of Elections' webpage on Early Voting for more details.
Voting at the PollsBack
Aside from the early voting period in your county, the polls are open on Election Day, from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m.
If you do not know where your polling place is, contact your Supervisor of Elections. You can also find your precinct and polling place on your county Supervisor of Elections' website.
Whether during early voting or on Election Day, you will be asked to provide at the polls a valid photo ID with signature. Any one of the following photo IDs will be accepted:
- Florida driver’s license
- Florida identification card issued by the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles
- United States passport
- Debit or credit card
- Military identification
- Student identification
- Retirement center identification
- Neighborhood association identification
- Public assistance identification.
If your photo ID does not include your signature, you will be asked to provide another ID that has your signature.
If you do not bring proper ID, you can still vote a provisional ballot. As long as you are eligible and voted in the proper precinct, your provisional ballot will count provided the signature on your provisional ballot matches the signature in your registration record.