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Are You A First-Time Voter?

Some forms of ID that are acceptable for Virginia's new ID requirements may not meet federal requirements. Share this information with your family and friends before you go to the polls this year.

Did you know there are special identification requirements for voters the first time they vote in a federal election?

Some forms of ID that are acceptable for Virginia's new ID requirements may not meet the federal requirements. Know what you need before you go to the polls!

Examples of acceptable ID for first time federal voters in Virginia include:

  • Your Virginia voter registration card
  • Driver's license or other government-issued photo ID (must be valid and name and address must be current)
  • Virginia student ID (with your photo or with your current name and address)
  • A bank statement, utility bill, paycheck stub, or government check with your current name and address
  • Other ID that meets both federal and Virginia requirements (find out which ones by clicking here)
  • A combination of an ID that meets federal requirements and one that meets Virginia requirements

If you need to know if you are a first time voter, please click here to search your registration status on the Virginia State Board of Elections website. Virginia Organizing recommends that everyone check their voter registration status before the October 15 registration deadline to ensure you are an active, registered voter. If your address or name is incorrect, or there are other errors in your registration, you must contact your registrar before the October 15 deadline. 

If you are a first time voter, you CANNOT use your Social Security card, Medicare card, Medicaid card, or Birth Certificate to satisfy the federal ID requirements! You must bring another form of ID to the polls. 

For your convenience, Virginia Organizing has posted information on our website for students, seniors and first time voters. We have also summarized some changes to the law. You can find all this information by clicking here. Please pass along to your friends and family members who may be first time voters.

Since all active registered voters received a voter registration card in the mail, it is best to use your voter registration card as your ID. The voter registration card meets both the federal and state ID requirements. If you do not have your voter ID card, there are other forms of ID that will work such as a bank statement, utility bill, paycheck, or government check as long as it lists your current name and address. You can also use your driver's license, passport, or other state-issued ID. Please click here for a complete list of identifications that meet the Virginia voter ID requirements and the federal (HAVA) ID requirements for first time voters.

Remember: if you need help on Election Day, call 1-866-OUR-VOTE. 

Virginia Organizing is a statewide grassroots organization that "brings people together to create a more just Virginia." For more information, click here.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Lindsay October 02, 2012 at 08:21 PM
Holy moly, people.
Jody October 02, 2012 at 08:27 PM
Sorry Lindsay, we're somehow off topic again and ranting about the Presidential election.
Lance Johnson October 02, 2012 at 08:41 PM
I didn't realize it was so difficult to figure out how to vote? I have been a registered voter since I was 18 years old. As a matter of fact I actually graduated from HS and enlisted in the military before I was eligible to vote. I was raised that it was was Duty as an American to Vote, not just my right as an American. Therefore, if you don't know how to vote or what is required, isn't that a failure on the individual more than society? For the sake of argument I agree, everyone should be educated and know "How" to go about voting, but my problem is that there are organizations out there that receive Gov't tax dollars to go out and solicit people to become voters for a specific cause or party, that is what I think is absurd. Can anyone say ACORN? Yes they actually have people registered to vote that are dead or should I say it politically correct... "no longer walking among us".
the-stix October 02, 2012 at 08:53 PM
@Carol Lewis.. the "man" gave more to charity as a percent of income, and paid more tax than he was could have qualified for had he claimed it all. I thought more tax and more charitable giving was a plus to the left. Better than the prez that gave less to charity as a percent of income, and claimed it all to pay the least tax he could.
Barbara Glakas October 02, 2012 at 08:57 PM
Despite all the above digressions, the bottom line is this: You must have your I.D. with you IN HAND when you come to vote. You will no longer be allowed to sign an affidavit this year if you accidently forgot your ID. Acceptable forms of IDs are listed below. More info is on the State Board of Elections website at: http://www.sbe.virginia.gov/VotinginPerson.html  Virginia voter registration card  Valid Virginia driver's license  Military ID  Any Federal, Virginia state or local government-issued ID  Employer issued photo ID card  Concealed handgun permit  Valid student ID issued by any institution of higher education located in the Commonwealth of Virginia  Current utility bill, bank statement, government check or paycheck indicating the name and address of the voter  Social Security card (Only in some cases. See SBE website for more info)

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