Oct. 9 is the last day to register to vote in the November elections in Texas. It’s also the last day to update your address if you’ve moved since the last time you voted.
Here’s everything you need to know to do either of those things:
Can I register?
The Texas Secretary of State is the state’s election authority. The criteria it lists for being eligible to vote are:
- You are a United States citizen;
- You are a resident of the county where you submit the application;
- You are at least 17 years and 10 months old and will be 18 or older on Election Day;
- You are not a convicted felon (though you may be eligible to vote if you have completed your sentence, probation and parole); and
- You have not been declared by a court exercising probate jurisdiction to be either totally mentally incapacitated or partially mentally incapacitated without the right to vote.
Am I already registered to vote?
You can check your voter registration status online here. If the information, including your name and address, is not correct, make sure to update it.
Not registered? Get an application.
Texas is not the easiest place to register to vote. There is no online registration (though you can fill out a form online, print it and mail it in). If you need to register, you have to do it in person or by mail.
(UPDATE 8 a.m. Oct. 7: Problems that left many forms on the Secretary of State's website inaccessible for most of Oct. 6 have been resolved.)
Print it. Fill it out. Mail it on or before Oct. 9.
You can also pick up a registration application at any Austin public library, a Travis County Tax Office (here’s a map, but note some locations are closed indefinitely) or at the elections office in your county.
In Travis County, you can get applications at a whole bunch of other places, including H-E-Bs, post offices and Amy’s Ice Creams. To get an application mailed to you, text "register" to the number 48683 and follow the prompts.
Where do I mail the application?
That depends on what county you live in.
See, the Secretary of State is Texas’ top election official, but voter registration and the elections themselves are run by county governments. So, you have to mail your registration application to your county election administrator.
In Travis County, that’s the tax assessor-collector, Bruce Elfant. You can mail it to his office at:
- Travis County Voter Registration, PO Box 149327, Austin, TX 78714-9327
If you’re in Williamson County, drop off your application at the Williamson County Elections Department:
- 301 S.E. Inner Loop, Suite 104, Georgetown, Texas, 78626
Or, mail the application:
- P.O. Box 209, Georgetown, Texas, 78627
If you're in Hays County, drop off or mail in your application to the Hays County elections administrator:
- 712 South Stagecoach Trail, Suite 1012, San Marcos, Texas, 78666
If you're in Bastrop County, mail or drop off your application to the Bastrop County election administrator:
- 804 Pecan St., Bastrop, Texas, 78602
What if I moved and I need to update my registration?
Great question! Even if you moved next door, you need to update your registration. If you moved a few streets over, you might have moved to an entirely different legislative, congressional or city council district.
Fortunately, there is a way to update your address WITHOUT mailing something or going to the tax office — but ONLY if you moved within the same county.
If that’s you, then go here to update your address.
If you moved to a different county, you’re going to have to register again in your new county — on paper.
Also, whether you’re doing it online or not, changes to your registration have to be made by the Oct. 9 deadline.
Have more questions about how to register, how to vote or the election? Ask our Texas Decides project. We'll be answering your questions in the weeks leading up to the election!