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How do I register to vote in NH?

voter registration application

One of the fundamental ways of participating in democracy is voting in an election. Before you can vote in a New Hampshire election, you need to register to vote. In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps to become a registered New Hampshire voter.

If you want to register to vote in NH, you must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Be domiciled in the town or ward where you wish to vote (you consider New Hampshire your home and generally spend most of your time here)
  • Be at least 18 years old by the date of the next election

There is no minimum period of time you must live in the state in order to be eligible.

If you’re not from New Hampshire but you attend college here, you can vote in New Hampshire elections. Of course, if you vote here, you can’t vote back in your home state for that election.

If you register to vote in New Hampshire, the state considers that a way of declaring residency – which means you have to follow other residency laws. In particular, if you own or drive a car in New Hampshire you may need to get a New Hampshire’s driver’s license and/or register your vehicle in New Hampshire.

Not sure if you're already registered? You can check on the Secretary of State's website.

You’ll want to bring certain documents when you register to vote. Voters have to prove their identity, age, citizenship, and where they live in order to vote. Acceptable documents include:

  • A driver’s license or non-driver ID from any state is proof of identity and age.
  • A birth certificate, U.S. Passport/Passcard, or naturalization document is proof of citizenship.

Note: A driver’s license, even a Real ID compliant one, is NOT considered proof of U.S. Citizenship.

As for proving that New Hampshire is your primary home, there are many acceptable documents, including:

  • a driver’s license that has your address on it
  • A document from the school that you attend showing that you live in campus housing
  • a rental agreement

There are many more examples of acceptable documents. You can find more examples on the NH Secretary of State’s website.

If you don’t have the required documents with you but you want to register on Election Day anyway, you can. You will sign an affidavit under oath, and a poll worker will take a photo to attach to the affidavit (or, if you have a religious objection to being photographed, have you sign another affidavit).

You will then receive an "Affidavit Voter Package" that includes a prepaid and pre-addressed envelope, information about the documents you need to provide to verify your identity, and a voucher for a free photo ID card from the DMV. You must return the required identity documents to the Secretary of State, in the prepaid envelope, within seven days of the election. If you do not submit this proof, your ballot will be removed from vote totals.

Now it’s time to register. There are a few different options when it comes to registering to vote in NH. You can:

  • Visit your town or city clerk’s office and tell them you wish to register to vote.
  • If you’re unable to register in person for an acceptable reason, such as having a physical disability or religious commitment, you can register by mail. Contact your clerk’s office to get started. Read more here.
  • You can also register at the polls on Election Day.

Keep in mind, voters in New Hampshire are not required to choose a party affiliation and can instead opt to register as ‘undeclared’. You may change this at any time. However, if you are registered with a political party there are  cutoff dates  for changing your party affiliation in the run-up to a primary election. Undeclared voters may choose a ballot from either party in a primary election.

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