Need-to-Know Florida Voting Info

Whether you are new to Florida or a seasoned resident, you have a very powerful tool in your hands – your vote. Voting gives you the opportunity to get a say in who your elected officials are and what laws get passed. There are a LOT of big elections in 2024 (presidential elections being one of them), so make sure you’re registered, and all your information is up to date. 

Voters in Florida have three options when it comes to making their voices heard in elections:  

  • Voting by mail 
  • Voting early at the polls 
  • Voting at the polls on Election Day 

If you vote by mail, you can track your ballot online to make sure it’s received and counted.  This primer will give you an overview of key information, such as: 

The following are links to bookmark: 

State of Florida General Voting Information 

The Florida Department of State’s Florida Division of Elections offers information about candidates, election dates, vote-by-mail info, voter precinct info, special elections, and even emergency and disaster election resources.   

You need to be registered in Florida to vote in Florida, and to do so requires that you have a current and valid Florida driver’s license or state ID. It also requires you have a social security number, as you will need the last four digits of for your registration.  

Just moved to Florida? Head to Florida Department of State’s online voter registration site. You can register online, or you can print and fill out the forms available there and then mail or deliver them to your county Supervisor of Elections.   

If you’ve already registered in Florida, you can also use this site to check your registration status and information and update it if anything’s changed (such as your address or political party affiliation). 

Speaking of parties, Florida is a closed primary election state, which means to vote for a party candidate or nominee in a primary election, including a presidential preference primary election, you must be a registered member of that party. However, you can register for a party or change your party affiliation at any time, as long as your registration or change in affiliation is done by the registration deadline at least 29 days prior to the election. 

Election Tips  

The following information applies to voters throughout Florida. Keep in mind, each part of the state has its own local elections as well, so you want to check your specific county’s website for additional, area-specific information.  

  • Polls are open from 7 AM to 7 PM on Election Day, with peak voting times being 7 AM to 8 AM, 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM, and 5 PM to 7 PM. If you are voting at a school, you should avoid voting at the arrival and dismissal time for the school.  
  • All eligible voters in line at their polling place at 7 PM will be allowed to vote, regardless of the length of the line. 
  • Know where you are supposed to vote before Election Day. You should have the name and address of your polling place listed on your voter information card. If not, you can get the info by using the online voter status verification form.  
  • Bring a valid form of identification, which must contain the voter’s name, photograph and signature and must not be expired. Here is a list of the acceptable forms of identification
  • While voters CAN wear t-shirts, buttons, hats, etc., while at the polling stations, they CAN NOT actively campaign at that time. 
  • Accessible touchscreen ballot marking devices are available at each polling place. 
  • If you make a mistake in voting, tell the clerk in charge of polling place and give them your spoiled ballot. They will issue you a replacement ballot. You are not allowed more than two replacement ballots per election. 
  • If you receive a Vote-by-Mail ballot but choose to instead vote at an Early Voting site or at your polling location on Election Day, please remember to bring your Mail Ballot with you to surrender to an election official.  
  • No photography is permitted in the polling room or early voting area. 
  • Ballots cannot be forwarded, so if you request to vote by mail, make sure your address on file is current and correct.  

Identification is Required 

Whether it be on Election Day or for early voting, you need to provide a valid photo ID as proof of identification in order to cast your ballot. The following are acceptable forms of photo IDs: 

  • Florida driver’s license 
  • Florida ID card 
  • United States passport 
  • Military ID 
  • Student ID 
  • Retirement center ID 
  • Neighborhood association ID 
  • Public assistance ID 
  • Veteran health ID card 
  • License to carry a concealed weapon 
  • Employee ID card issued by federal, state, county, or municipal government 

Your photo ID MUST include your signature. If it doesn’t, you will be asked to provide another form of ID that does have your signature. Pictures of your ID are not a valid form of proof.  

Tampa-Specific Voting Information 

If you live in Hillsborough County, you can use this specific precinct finder to find your precinct number, as well as get information about your precinct and the office holders who represent voters in your precinct. Polling locations can change from one year to the next, so remember to check the site to see if yours has. Keep in mind, if you are voting in person ON Election Day, you MUST vote at your correct polling place. If you try to vote at the wrong polling place, your vote will not count.  

The following are links to bookmark: v

The dates for the 2024 Presidential Preference Primary Election are as follows: 

  • Early voting: March 3 to March 17 
  • Vote by mail: Voted ballots must be in the Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections Office by 7 p.m. March 19.  
  • Election Day: March 19, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Voting by Mail 

For any Hillsborough County resident looking for vote by mail, you must first request a vote-by-mail ballot from the office of the supervisor of elections. Vote by Mail ballots can be mailed back to the office, dropped off at any Ballot Intake Station at early voting sites during early voting hours, or dropped off at one of the county’s four election offices.  

If for some reason you can’t get to a voting location, that’s ok. You can designate someone to pick up a Vote by Mail ballot for you. If you choose to have a designee, you MUST submit a request for Vote by Mail and provide your designee with a letter authorizing them to pick up your ballot for you. The designee must also print out, sign, and produce an affidavit when picking up the ballot.  

Keep in mind that requesting a mail-in ballot is a one-time thing. If you want to mail in your ballot the following year, you will need to request a mail-in ballot again. 

Military and Overseas Voters 

There are special accommodations for military and overseas voters. For those residing outside the U.S., or who are an absent uniformed services voter, you will need to fill out a Federal Post Card Application, which allows you to register and request a Vote by Mail ballot. You must submit this form to the Supervisor of Elections AT LEAST 29 days before the election. Provided you’ve filled that out in time, you should expect a ballot mailed to you before an election. 

Voters with Disabilities 

Hillsborough County provides several options to make it easier for voters with disabilities to cast a ballot. There are three different options to choose from: 

  • Voting In Person with Assistance

    You can bring an assistant to your polling station or request assistance from our poll workers. If you choose to bring an assistant, you and your assistant will complete and sign a form that acknowledges the request for assistance. Your assistant may read the ballot to you, mark your selections, and place the completed ballot in the scanner for tabulation.

  • ExpressVote Ballot Marking Device

    You can also use an ExpressVote Ballot Marking Device. These devices offer a convenient way to privately and independently mark your ballot, thanks to various features like audio, enlarged text, braille, sip and puff, and more. To use this device, simply inform the poll worker at the voting station during check-in. The worker will provide you with a blank ExpressVote ballot, which you can use to make your selections. After marking your choices, the ballot will be printed and handed back to you. Then, you can proceed to place the ballot in the scanner and you’re all done!

  • Omniballot

    Another option for those with disabilities is the Omniballot (which is also available to those who simply want to vote from home). This innovative system offers a hassle-free way to vote without having to leave your house. As with any other Vote By Mail ballot, you need to request this by calling the supervisor’s office or use their online request form. Once your request has been processed, your Vote By Mail packet will be mailed to you, including a backup paper ballot and a postage-paid return envelope. You will also receive an email with instructions and a link to access the remote ballot marking system on your computer.

    To use the remote ballot marking system, you simply need to select that option when completing the online request form. Once you have marked your ballot, you must print it, place it in the official return envelope, sign the envelope, and ensure that it is received by our office no later than 7 p.m. on Election Day.

Updating Voter Information 

If you need to update your voter information or request a new voter information card, you can do so online through the Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections website. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this online, you can call the office at (813) 612-4180 or email to update your information. Alternatively, you can visit one of your county offices or other voter registration agencies to obtain a paper registration application. The following qualify as voter registration agencies: 

  • Supervisor of Elections offices  
  • Driver license offices  
  • Public assistance offices  
  • Public libraries  
  • Offices that serve people with disabilities  
  • Armed forces recruitment offices  
  • Centers for independent living

Registration Cancellation 

If you move out of Hillsborough County or no longer wish to be a registered voter with Hillsborough County, make sure to fill out a form and form and mail, email, or hand deliver it to the office of Hillsborough’s Supervisor of Elections. 

Brevard County-Specific Voting Information 

If you live in Titusville, Viera, Melbourne, or Palm Bay, Brevard is your county, and all your area-specific voting information can be found on the Vote Brevard site. Here you can check the status of and update your registration and find your specific polling places for your precinct as well as get answers to and information about current county- and city-specific elections.  

Per Florida law, you must vote in the precinct of your legal residence. If you need to change your address, do so prior to Election Day. While it isn’t recommended, you CAN change your address at the polls on Election Day provided you are an eligible voter registered in Florida and:  

  • You are moving from one address to another within Brevard County, or  
  • You are moving from another county within Florida  

If you do not meet one of these criteria, you will receive a provisional ballot. 

NOTE: As part of the Voting Rights Act, those voters whose primary language is not English can ask for language assistance at their local polling stations. They are also permitted to bring someone with them to the polling station to assist them in translating.  

If you need voting assistance due to other issues, such as blindness or the inability to read or write, you may bring someone with you to assist you in voting (or, alternatively, have two poll workers help you). However, whomever you choose to assist you must NOT be your employer, an agent of your employer, or an officer or agent of your union. 

Mail-in Ballots 

Are you a college study, active-duty military, or simply an expat who resides in Brevard County but will be out of town or out of the country for the elections? No worries. Any US citizens who reside outside of the country and who are qualified to vote in Florida can request a mail-in ballot. Any overseas voter requesting a mail ballot must include the following in their request: 

  • Name  
  • Brevard County residence address 
  • Date of birth 
  • Overseas address (or APO or FPO address) 
  • Fax or email address if they want their ballot sent by either of those two options

Once a voter has been verified as eligible, the Elections Office sends the appropriate ballot to the voter.  

If you request your ballot be faxed to you, that ballot is ONLY valid for the one election for which you requested it. If you want ballots for other elections, you will need to submit additional requests.    

Any request for a mail ballot MUST be received by the Elections Office no later than 5pm on the 12th day before the election. All mail ballots must be mailed by the Elections Office no later than the tenth day before the election.  

Early Voting 

Brevard County offers early voting options via 10 early voting locations as well as secure ballot intake stations, which are available during early voting hours for those wishing to drop off their voted mail ballots. 

  • Early voting period site openings:
    Monday – Friday – 8:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
    Saturday – Sunday – 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 pm.

As a note, voters may vote at any of Brevard’s Early Voting sites regardless of their residential address. However, ON Election Day itself, voters can ONLY vote at their precinct-specific polling location. 

Need to speak to someone directly? Reach out to the Brevard County election supervisors: 

  • 321-290-VOTE(8683)
  • 1-833-803-0613(Spanish – Toll Free)

Running for Office 

Interested in taking it a step further? Consider running for office! All the qualifying information you need here.  

The Sunshine State Is Calling Your Name