• Voter Registration, and Voting Rights for People With Criminal Records

    October 06, 2010
    With Election Day approaching fast, don't forget to register to vote! According to Board of Elections rules, mail-in voter registration forms must be postmarked by midnight, Friday, Oct. 8, and received no later than October 13 to be valid for the upcoming general election on Nov. 2.

    And don't forget: In New York State, people with criminal convictions CAN VOTE unless they are:

    • currently incarcerated for a felony conviction, or
    • on parole and do not have either a Certificate of Relief from Disabilities or a Certificate of Good Conduct.
    Everyone else with a criminal conviction can vote!

    This means you CAN VOTE if you:

    • are on probation - even if you have a felony conviction.
    • are on parole and have a "Certificate of Relief from Disabilities" or a "Certificate of Good Conduct."
    • were convicted of a felony but not sentenced to state prison time.
    • were charged with a felony, but have not yet been convicted - even if you are in jail awaiting trial.
    • were only convicted of misdemeanors - even if you are in a local jail.
    • already served your maximum prison time.
    • were discharged from parole.
    • were pardoned or exonerated.
    You do NOT need a "Certificate of Relief from Disabilities" or other document in order to register to vote.

    If you are voting while in jail:

    • You must request an absentee ballot.
    • It must be postmarked no later than the day before the Election.
    • Once you receive the ballot, put the permanent home address on the registration form (not the address of the jail).

    Click here to see LAC's free videos on voting rights.
    Click here for FAQs on voting with a criminal record.