All voters casting a ballot in-person will be asked to show one form of identification. Any voter who does not present acceptable identification may instead sign a statement, subject to felony penalties, that they are the named registered voter who they claim to be. Any voter who does not present acceptable identification or sign this statement must vote a provisional ballot.
The next election is the General Election scheduled for November 8th. Early Voting will begin on Friday September 23rd. It will end on Saturday November 5th. The hours will be Monday – Friday from 9:00 AM until 4:30 PM. Early Voting will also be available on Saturday October 29th and Saturday November 5th from 9:00 AM until 5:00 PM. Early Voting will be available on Sunday October 30th from 1:00 PM until 5:00 PM.
Deadline to register or update your registration before the November 8th General Election – October 17, 2022
Deadline to apply for an absentee ballot – October 28, 2022
Deadline to vote early – November 5, 2022
You can view a sample ballot here.
Voters can request an absentee ballot online, in person at the Office of Elections, by fax (804-646-7848), or by email (Absentee@rva.gov).
Prefer the ease and comfort of voting from home? Virginia law allows voters the option to join a Permanent Vote By Mail Roster and have their ballots sent directly to their preferred address ahead of every election.
The deadline to apply for an absentee ballot for the November 8th General Election is Friday October 28th. The first batch of absentee ballots will be mailed on September 16th. Afterwards, ballots are mailed the next business day after the absentee ballot applications are received.
All absentee ballots, those sent by mail and those cast in-person, are counted on Election Day in Virginia. Ballots must be postmarked by Election Day or dropped off at the Office of Elections no later than 7:00 p.m. on Election Day.
IMPORTANT – Please mark your ballot using a black or blue pen.
What if I received an absentee ballot by mail but I want to vote in person?
1. Return your un-voted ballot by mail.
• Leave or reseal your un-voted ballot in Envelope A and mail using the pre‐addressed return envelope.
• You will receive a new ballot when you go to vote in person.
2. Take your un-voted ballot with you when you go to vote early in person or on Election Day.
Important! If you lost your absentee ballot, you can still vote in person. Notify the election official when you come in person to vote. If you choose to vote in person and do not return your un-voted ballot, you will be oﬀered a provisional ballot which will be reviewed for counting after Election Day.
Ballot Drop Boxes were introduced in 2020 as an initiative to provide voters with a secure alternative option to return their ballot.
Ballot Drop Boxes provide voters with a safe, accessible, contact free method to return their voted ballot.
What You Need to Know
Drop Boxes are available to voters starting on the first day of Early Voting (Friday September 23rd).
Drop Boxes are available until 5 PM on the Monday before the election.
Following the last day to return absentee ballots via a drop box, ballots can be returned in person at the Office of Elections on Election Day, and on Election Day before 7 PM at any polling location in the city.
Drop boxes, which are monitored by video surveillance, are available to the public during normal business hours.
Ballots are collected daily from drop boxes by staff of the General Registrar.
Before you return your ballot:
Make sure you seal it inside Envelope B.
Fill in all spaces on the Statement of Voter on Envelope B. You and your witness must sign.
If you make a mistake marking your ballot, or if you lose or damage your ballot, please contact our office at (804) 646-5950 or at Absentee@rva.gov.
Drop Boxes are located at:
The Office of Elections
2134 W. Laburnum Avenue
Southside Community Services Center
4100 Hull Street Road
900 East Broad Street
To track your ballot as it makes its way through the mail stream click here.
Early Voting in Virginia must take place over a period of 45 days as required by law. For the November 8th General Election Early Voting will occur starting on Friday September 23rd. It will conclude on Saturday November 5th. The hours of Early Voting will be Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM until 4:30 PM. Early Voting will also be available on Saturday October 29th and Saturday November 5th, from 9:00 AM until 5:00 PM. In addition, Early Voting will be available on Sunday October 30th from 1:00 PM until 5:00 PM.
Early Voting will be available at the following locations:
Office of Elections
2134 W. Laburnum Avenue
900 East Broad Street
Hickory Hill Community Center
3000 East Belt Boulevard
The Voting Accessibility for the Elderly and Handicapped Act requires that voting locations are set up so that people with disabilities can enter, vote, and exit with relative ease during each election.
• All polling places are handicap accessible.
• All polling places are equipped with at least one ADA touchscreen voting machine.
• Voters may choose an individual to assist them with voting.
• Vote-by-mail voting is available to all voters upon request.
Every voting location in the City Of Richmond meets the Americans with Disability Act (ADA) standards. Each one is equipped with a paper-based voting system that uses touchscreen and/audio technology, which could help voters who have issues with their eyesight, trouble reading, or disabilities.
• All ballots are available in two languages: English and Spanish,
If you are print disabled (blind, have low vision or impaired manual dexterity) and you would like to vote using an electronic ballot marking tool, please contact us. NOTE: To use the electronic marking option, you must have access to a computer, you must have the ability to print your ballot, and you must return it by one of the methods listed above. Our office will send you the envelopes necessary to return your ballot.
Voters in Richmond cast their ballot on a DS200. A DS200 is a ballot scanner and vote tabulator that is manufactured by Election Systems and Software (ES&S).
This is how the DS200 optical scan voting machines work: a voter marks a paper ballot and places her/his ballot in the optical scan machine. The machine electronically scans the ballot, records the vote, and informs the voter that the ballot has been cast. The machines also let the voter know if the ballot is blank or over-voted (voted for more candidates than allowed in a contest). When the polls close, the DS200 provides election results. In the case of a recount, there is a voter-verified paper audit trail for every vote. Voters who cast their ballot during Early Voting will use what is called an ExpressVote. An ExpressVote is a paper-based ExpressVote Universal Voting System that uses touch-screen technology that produces a paper record for tabulation. As a marker, the ExpressVote handles the entire marking process, eliminating unclear marks and the need for interpretation of the voter’s mark that usually occurs during a recount.
If you would like more information about election laws at the federal, state, and local level, click the links below to visit various resourceful and informational sites.
Statues enforced by the Voting Section of the Department of Justice
24.2 of the Code of Virginia
Ordinances regarding elections
Commonly referred to as the EAC, the United States Election Assistance Commission was created as a result of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) and is charged with developing guidance to meet HAVA requirements, adopting voluntary voting system guidelines, and serving as a national clearinghouse of information on election administration. EAC also accredits testing laboratories and certifies voting systems, as well as audits the use of HAVA funds.
United States Election Assistance Commission
Our drop boxes are constructed of durable material able to withstand vandalism, removal, and inclement weather. Our drop boxes are all monitored by a video surveillance system. Our drop boxes are secured by a lock. Only members of our staff have access to the keys to the drop boxes. You can find more information regarding our drop boxes by clicking here.
The DS200 does not have a modem and are not connected to the internet.
The DS200 utilizes physical and system access controls including lockable doors, tamper-evident seals and access codes. These security safeguards cannot be bypassed or deactivated and alert election officials of unauthorized access while the unit is in storage, transport, preparation and operation.
The DS200 generates a detailed audit log of all actions and events that have occurred on the unit, which can be printed at any time. Every action and event, including access attempts, access of system functions and errors, is logged and timestamped.
The DS200 will only accept certified and approved USB flash drives that contain encrypted data sealed with the correct, FIPS-compliant, signed data key. As such, once an election official installs election programming, it is not possible for a separate device to interface with the DS200 in order to overwrite or change the election definition or system firmware.
The DS200 is a purpose-built tabulator. Its system functions are only executable during election events, in the manner and order intended by election officials performing their duties. The system performs a self-diagnostic test at startup, which alerts election officials of errors or changes to the system before any election data is introduced.
All data generated during the polls is encrypted and digitally signed. Additional hash validations ensure data integrity remains intact. The DS200 also generates a signed data key, ensuring that should unauthorized access of a unit occur, no other units can be affected through data transfer.