West Virginia

State of West Virginia Elections & Voting

Election Day is November 8

  • October 18                  Deadline to register to vote
  • November 2                Deadline to request an absentee ballot
  • November 7                Deadline to return absentee ballots by hand
  • November 8                Deadline to postmark absentee ballots
  • November 8                Election Day


To register to vote in West Virginia, you must:

  • Be a United States Citizen
  • Be 18 years old by election day
  • Not be ruled mentally incompetent by a court of law
  • Not be serving a sentence for a felony, treason, or bribery in an election*

*Once the felony conviction sentence is fully served, he/she may re-register to vote and participate in the next West Virginia election. For information about re-registering to vote after you complete your sentence, check out our Felon Voting Rights brochure.


How to register to vote:


Voter Registration ID Requirements

If you are registering to vote for the first time in West Virginia or your county, and you have not voted in a federal election in this state, you must show a valid ID with your application or the first time you vote. If you mail your application, you may send a copy of a valid ID. We accept the following documents that show your current name and address:

  • Valid photo identification
  • Utility bill
  • Bank statement
  • Government check
  • Paycheck
  • Any other official government document

To register to vote or update your voter registration online, you must provide the following information:

  • Your name as it appears on your West Virginia driver’s license or ID card
  • Your date of birth
  • Your West Virginia driver’s license or ID card number
  • Your last four digits of your Social Security Number

When you complete the application online it will be submitted to your county clerk for processing. The county clerk will notify you if your application has been accepted or rejected.

If you do not have a West Virginia driver’s license or ID card number and the last four digits of your Social Security Number, you may not submit your form online, but you may enter your information online to be auto-filled in a voter registration application. Once you create your application online, you may print, sign and deliver it to your County Clerk by mail or in person.


Voter ID Requirements

West Virginia voters must show an approved form of identification at the polls during early voting or on election day. All forms of ID must be valid and not expired.

  • Acceptable Forms of Non-Photo Identification:
    • Voter registration card
    • Medicare card or Social Security card
    • Birth certificate
    • WV hunting or fishing license
    • WV SNAP ID card
    • WV TANF program ID card
    • WV Medicaid ID card
    • Bank or debit card
    • Utility bill or bank statement issued within six months of the date of the election
    • Health insurance card issued to the voter
    • Any document issued by the WV or US government that displays the voter’s name
    • Any document issued by the state of WV or U.S. government containing voter’s name, including a WV driver’s license, passport, U.S. or WV government employee ID or military ID
  • Acceptable Forms of Photo Identification:
    • Driver’s license
    • Student ID card
    • A concealed carry (pistol/revolver) permit

Exceptions to the voter ID requirements:

  • Exception 1: Signed, Sworn Statement by an Adult who has Known the Voter for 6 Months or More: A voter does not have to show an ID to vote if the voter is accompanied by an adult who: Has known the voter for at least 6 months; Shows a photo ID with his or her name and address; and Signs an affidavit at the polling place confirming the voter’s identity.
  • Exception 2: A Poll Worker Knows the Voter: A voter does not have to show ID to vote if a poll worker has known the voter for at least 6 months. No additional affidavit or ID is required.
  • Exception 3: Residents of State Care Facilities: Residents of licensed WV state care facilities do not have to show ID to vote if: The voter is a resident of the care facility; The care facility is a polling place; and The resident’s polling place is located at the care facility.


Absentee Voting

Eligibility to vote absentee in West Virginia requires two basic criteria: (1) confinement or not being present in the county during in-person voting, and (2) a permitted reason/excuse.
Permitted Reasons and Excuses to Vote Absentee by Mail:

  • Illness, injury or other medical reason (includes confinement due to COVID-19*)
  • Immobility due to a disability or “extreme advanced age” (this term is undefined in law; immobilized voters must self-identify)
  • Incarceration or home detention (does not include individuals serving a sentence following conviction of a felony, treason, or election bribery)
  • Work hours and distance from county seat
  • Inaccessible early voting site and polling place
  • Personal or business travel
  • Attendance at college or other place of education or training
  • Temporary residence outside of the county
  • Service as an elected or appointed state or federal official

The absentee ballot application must be received in your county clerk’s office by the 6th day before each election. Applications may be submitted to your county clerk via fax, U.S. mail, email, or in-person by hand delivery.

If your first time voting will be absentee by mail, you must send a copy of one of the forms of valid ID listed below with your ballot:

  • Valid photo identification
  • Utility bill
  • Bank statement
  • Government check
  • Paycheck
  • Any other official government document




Tribes in West Virginia

Federally recognized tribes

  • None

State recognized tribes

  • None

Native Vote Coordinators

Sign up to be a local Native Vote coordinator today!

Major Party Contact Information

Chair, Belinda Biafore

Chairman, Conrad G. Lucas II

Posted in States.