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It's Time to Get Ready for the November Election

Are you registered to vote in the Nov. 3 election? Whether you’re new to town, newly registered, or looking to get registered in time for the upcoming presidential election, we’ve rounded what you need to know make sure your vote counts.

By Megan Dollar

Sep 28 2020 at 11:48 a.m.

Polling place stock image
Photo courtesy ShutterstockThe deadline to register to vote in the Nov. 3 election in Missouri is Oct. 7.

Registration

If you need to double-check your registration status, visit govotemissouri.com and click “Register to Vote.” There, you’ll find an option to check your registration status. This will work for anyone registered to vote in the state of Missouri. Keep in mind that the address on your voter registration must match the address of your personal identification. If the addresses do not match, you will need to update your registration. All first-time registration methods operate as registration update methods, too.

If you know you’re not yet registered and you’re looking to do so, you have a few options. But, first, make sure you get it done by Oct. 7—This is the deadline to register to vote in Missouri for the Nov. 3 election. 

Mail-in registration

You can mail your paper registration to your local election authority. You may print this form from the Secretary of State’s website or request one to be mailed to you. If you request an application to be mailed to you, keep in mind that it will take a few days to process. To be registered for the Nov. election, your mail-in registration must be postmarked Oct. 7 at the latest.

In-person registration

Many counties offer in-person registration at select public locations. In Greene and Christian counties schools, libraries, colleges and universities, the DMV, city halls, and the Historic Courthouse are all permanent voter registration sites. Check with your county clerk to see what locations in your county are designated voter registration sites. 

Online registration

The state of Missouri offers an online registration option, but it can only be completed on a smartphone, tablet or other mobile device. You can not register online using a laptop or desktop computer. 


Voting options

COVID-19 has brought new challenges to the voting process this year so we’re here to help you figure out how you can vote safely and effectively.

In-person on Nov. 3

Many election officials, especially those locally, have said they believe that in-person voting on election day is the best option for those wanting to make sure their ballot is cast with 100% certainty. If that’s you, you can find your polling location on the back of your voter registration card or by going to govotemissouri.com, clicking on “Register to Vote,” and then following the steps to verify your registration. Your registration information, including polling location, will be provided to you.

When voting in person, make sure to bring proper identification. Approved identification include: any I.D. issued by the state of Missouri, an agency of the state or a local election authority of the state, I.D. issued by the United States government or agency, I.D. issued by a university, college, technical or vocational school located in Missouri, or a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check or other government document that contains both your name and address.

Missouri has a few options for those who may need more accessible options to get their ballot cast on Nov. 3. Voters with disabilities have the options to vote curbside at polling locations, and no proof or verification of the disability is required. Upon arriving to the polling location, someone can go into the polling station and request a poll worker bring a ballot out or some polling locations may have a phone number posted outside that you can call to request a ballot be brought out for curbside voting. You may also request to cast your ballot at a different polling location if your assigned location is not accessible, just call your local election authority.

Mail-in

While mail-in voting has been a topic of much debate this year, it is a valid option available to all registered voters in Missouri. You do not need a reason or excuse to vote by mail. To cast your ballot via mail, you must request a mail-in ballot from your local election authority by Oct. 21. This can be done in-person or by mail. Once processed, you will receive your ballot in the mail. Complete the ballot promptly. In Greene County, the signature on your ballot must match the signature on your voter registration. Then, you will need to have your ballot notarized. You can find a list of notaries at the Missouri Secretary of State’s website. Once your ballot is notarized, it must be mailed back to your local election authority via the United States Postal Service. 

Missouri Secretary of State Jay Ashcroft has encouraged those wishing to cast their vote via mail to send their ballot back at least two weeks prior to election day to ensure the ballot is received and processed on time. 


Absentee by mail

The process of absentee voting doesn’t differ much from the process of mail-in voting. However, to vote absentee, you must provide a reason or excuse. Some reasons require that your ballot be notarized, others do not. 

You are eligible to vote absentee without a notary if:

  • You are incapacitated or confined due to illness
  • You have contracted COVID-19 this year
  • You are at increased risk of contracting COVID-19 for any of the following reasons: 
  • you are 65 years of age or older, you live in a long-term care facility, you have chronic lung disease or asthma, you have a serious heart condition, you are immunocompromised, you have diabetes, you have chronic kidney disease and are undergoing dialysis, you have liver disease.

You are eligible to vote absentee with a notary if:

  • Your religious beliefs or practice prevent you from being at the polling location on election day
  • You are working as an election worker
  • You are incarcerated and still eligible to vote
  • You are a certified participant of an address confidentiality program
  • You will be absent from your jurisdiction on election day.

As with mail-in voting, the deadline to request an absentee ballot is Oct. 21 at 5 p.m. Completed absentee ballots may be returned by mail or in person to your local election office. Ballots must be received by 7 p.m. on election day.

In-person Absentee

You may also complete your absentee ballot in person at your local election office anytime from now until 5 p.m. on Nov. 2. This is only an option if you are eligible to vote absentee for any of the previously listed reasons and requires the same request process.

Be Prepared

In all instances, make sure to read voting instructions carefully and work through your ballot slowly to ensure your vote is cast accurately. Always check with your local election authority, the county clerk, for the most accurate and up-to-date information regarding upcoming elections.

If you choose to vote in-person, make sure to follow your local authority’s guidelines for preventing the spread of COVID-19.

Find Your Local Election Authority

Your local election authority, or county clerk's office, has all of the information needed to help you cast your vote this November.

Jasper County Clerk

County Clerk Charlie Davis
Jasper County Courthouse
302 South Main St., Carthage
417-358-0413
Or Joplin Courts Building
601 South Pearl Street, Room 200, Joplin
417-625-4307

Newton County Clerk

County Clerk Tami Owens
101 South Wood Street, Neosho
417-451-8221

Taney County Clerk

County Clerk Donna Neeley
132 David Street, Forsyth
417-546-7249

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