FAQ for organizers
What's the difference between Online registration, Mail-in registration, and being a deputy registrar?
A deputy registrar has completed a training, and uses a yellow cardstock form (with a green copy behind it) to register voters. The deputy is authorized to verify an applicant's two ID documents - one of which shows current residence address. Both the deputy and the applicant sign the yellow form.
Why use the Add One Voter sheet, as opposed to other mail-in forms?
There are a number of forms for mail-in voter registration, and the Clerk's office will accept any of them. The Add One Voter sheet uses the mail-in form taken from the National Voter Registration Form, which is accepted by almost all the states. It has the additional advantage of being small. The Add One Voter sheet also includes a link and QR code to Illinois OVA.
In any event, it's better to have an interaction that ends on a positive note: yes I can do that rather than no you can't help me. It's better for the volunteer and better for the person they've reached out to.
How do you become a deputy registrar? And can I register voters for a political group?
Deputy registrars must be sponsored by an organization. It may be a political organization, or a civic organization, or any organization. Organizations will usually be happy to sponsor you so you can be trained, even if you aren't a formal member – but check with them first. You can request a training for your organization: here's the Deputy Voter Registration Group Training Request.
Can deputies in Cook County register voters in other counties?
Yes. Any registrar deputized in any county can register anyone in Illinois. Oddly, you can only take a training in the county you are registered to vote in. And in Cook County, it's even separated by City vs. Suburban. If you live in Cook County, you can get trained online here.
Am I still registered if I changed my address?
Probably, and you can check at the Illinois OVA website. If the registration rolls have been "cleaned" you may have been removed.
During the "dead period" 30 days preceding an election you can't change your address, but you can go to the right polling place on election day and use Same Day Registration. Bring two IDs, one of which shows your new address. Find your polling place at the Illinois OVA website
How close to an election can I register?
Normal registration ends 30 days before an election, but you actually have lots of options remaining, up to and including election-day registration and voting. Illinois State Board of Elections PDF download explains all the options and dates.
Will a new (or moved) registrant need to show ID when they first go to vote?
If they provided their IL Driver's license number or State ID number, on the OVA website, or on the mail-in form, and the number can be matched up with the DMV database, then they will not need to show ID at the polls. This is true even if the claimed registration address does not match the DMV address. (People find this surprising, but it's true.)
What forms of ID are acceptable?
If you have supplied your drivers license or state ID number, on the online OVA website or on a mail-in application, you probably will not be asked to show ID (even if it's the first time you vote.)