Conditional Voter Registration and Provisional Voting

Provisional Voting- Conditional Voter Registration

 

Missed the registration deadline? If you live in San Francisco, you may visit a Voting Center to conditionally register and vote a provisional ballot during the two weeks prior to Election Day or on Election Day. Conditional voter registration (CVR) is only available at the City Hall Voting Center and the San Francisco State University (SFSU) Voting Center, and is not available at polling places. For Voting Center hours and directions, visit the Vote at a Voting Center page.

Before receiving a CVR ballot, you must complete a registration application. Either fill out a paper registration application when you arrive to the Voting Center or submit an online application in advance at  registertovote.ca.gov.

After voting, you may check the status of your CVR ballot and registration using the Voter Portal.

On this page, you can review frequently asked questions about CVR, and also learn about circumstances that require casting a provisional ballot at a polling place.

Frequently Asked Questions about CVR

  1. What is Conditional Voter Registration?
  2. I missed the registration deadline for this election. Can I still vote?
  3. What are Voting Center hours after the registration deadline?
  4. Will I be able to register and vote on the same day using CVR?
  5. What is the process for casting a CVR provisional ballot?
  6. Can I register online before casting a CVR ballot?
  7. Are accessible voting options available to CVR voters?
  8. When will the Department of Elections begin processing and counting CVR provisional ballots?
  9. How can I confirm my CVR provisional ballot was counted?
  10. Will my CVR registration be valid for the next election?
  11. How do I know if I am registered to vote in San Francisco?
  12. I moved within San Francisco and did not update my address before the registration deadline. Where can I vote?
  13. Can I vote here if am not yet registered in San Francisco?
  14. What if I have questions or need help?
  1. What is Conditional Voter Registration?
    Conditional Voter Registration (CVR) allows eligible California residents to register and vote provisionally at their county elections office (but not at polling places or by mail) after the normal registration deadline, up through Election Day.
  2. I missed the registration deadline for this election. Can I still vote?
    Yes! If you are a resident of San Francisco and missed the October 21 registration deadline, you can register to vote and cast a provisional CVR ballot at the Department of Elections’ Voting Center in City Hall or San Francisco State University (SFSU).
  3. What are Voting Center hours after the registration deadline?
    After October 21, the City Hall Voting Center will be open:
    • Weekdays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • Weekends, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m
    • Election Day, Tuesday, November 5, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    The San Francisco State University (SFSU) Voting Center will be open:
    • Saturday and Sunday, November 2-3, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
    • Monday, November 4, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    • Election Day, Tuesday, November 5, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  4. Will I be able to register and vote on the same day using CVR?
    Yes. You can register and vote a provisional ballot, but only at a Voting Center in City Hall or San Francisco State University.
  5. What is the process for casting a CVR provisional ballot?
    After you complete a voter registration card and a ballot application, we will issue you a ballot and a CVR provisional envelope. Drop your envelope in the Red Box but save the receipt to check on the status of your ballot.
  6. Can I register online before casting a CVR ballot?
    Yes. You can register online at  registertovote.ca.gov. When you arrive to the Voting Center to receive your ballot, inform Department staff that you registered online to expedite the process to issue your ballot.
  7. Are accessible voting options available to CVR voters?strong>
    Yes. CVR voters can use an accessible voting machine to mark their vote by using either a touchscreen or audio ballot, or any other assistive tools available at the Voting Center.
  8. When will the Department of Elections begin processing and counting CVR provisional ballots?
    The Department will begin processing CVR provisional ballots on the 10th business day before Election Day. After the Department confirms you are eligible to vote in San Francisco and did not already vote in another jurisdiction, your ballot will be counted.
  9. How can I confirm my CVR provisional ballot was counted?
    Use the online lookup at www.sfelections.org/tools/pvlookup/ by entering the number on the envelope receipt. You can also call (866) 325-9163 or (415) 554-4375.
  10. Will my CVR registration be valid for the next election?
    Yes. You will be registered to vote with the name, address and party preference you provided on your voter registration card.
  11. How do I know if I am registered to vote in San Francisco?
    Use the online look up at sfelections.org/reglookup or call (415) 554-4375. To see if you are registered in another county, visit  voterstatus.ca.gov.
  12. I moved within San Francisco and did not update my address before the registration deadline. Where can I vote?
    You can either vote at the Voting Center or cast a provisional ballot at your new polling place on Election Day. Write your new address on the provisional envelope to update your voter registration record.
  13. Can I vote here if am not yet registered in San Francisco?
    Yes, eligible residents can register and vote a CVR provisional ballot at a Voting Center from October 22 through Election Day, Tuesday, November 5.
  14. What if I have questions or need help?
    If you have questions about CVR or other election- or voting-related matters, contact the Department of Elections:
            Email: SFVote@sfgov.org
            Telephone: (415) 554-4375 or (866) 325-9163 toll free
            TTY:  (415) 554-4386
            In person: City Hall, Room 48, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Provisional Voting at Polling Places

Occasionally there are circumstances that require a voter to cast a provisional ballot. Often it is because the voter went to a different polling place than the one assigned and does not wish to be re-directed to the assigned polling place. Another common reason is that the Department of Elections issued the voter a vote-by-mail ballot but the voter is unable to surrender it in exchange for a polling place ballot.

If you are a registered voter, you have the right to cast a provisional ballot at your polling place for the following reasons:

  • You were issued a vote-by-mail ballot that you are unable to surrender and you want to vote at the polls
  • Your name does not appear on the official roster of registered voters for the precinct and your voting eligibility cannot be verified by the poll worker
  • You have moved within San Francisco but did not re-register to vote
  • You wish to vote a party ballot during a Primary Election for a party that does not match your registration or that has not allowed unaffiliated voters to participate
  • You are a first-time voter listed in the original roster with "ID Required" printed under your name and you do not show acceptable identification
  • You live in a mail ballot precinct but prefer to vote provisionally at a polling place

If you did not register to vote before the deadline, you have the right to register to vote conditionally at the Department of Elections and cast a provisional ballot during the two weeks prior to Election Day and on Election Day.

The processing and counting of provisional ballots begins after Election Day, and is open to public observation. Provisional ballots are counted after the Department has determined that the voter is eligible to vote and has not cast another ballot. If the provisional ballot has the same contests as the ballots used in the voter’s assigned precinct, then all of the votes are counted. If the provisional ballot has certain contests that were not included on the ballots in the voter’s assigned precinct, the Department counts only the votes for the contests in which the voter was entitled to vote.

Department of Elections staff work diligently to review and count ballots every day, including weekends, until all provisional ballots have been reviewed. To check the status of your provisional ballot during the review process, use the Provisional Ballot Status Lookup tool.