Do You Need an ID? (Less restrictive)

Yes. Alabama passed a law in 2011 requiring voters to show a photo ID, but the law didn't take effect until June 2014, after the Supreme Court's ruling in Shelby v. Holder. Voters must present one of 14 forms of ID, including a valid driver's license or non-driver ID issued by the state; a valid federal or state ID from any state: a city or county ID; college student or employee ID, military or tribal ID.

Without ID, a voter may cast a regular ballot only if two election officials sign sworn affidavits confirming his eligibility. Otherwise, a voter must file a provisional ballot, which is only counted if he returns by 5 p.m. on the Friday after the election to present an acceptable form of ID.

Do You Need an Excuse to Vote Absentee? (Restrictive)

Voters must provide an excuse to mail in an absentee ballot.

What if You Have a Felony Conviction? (Most restrictive)

Some people convicted of certain felonies may apply for restoration after completing their full sentence. But those convicted of murder, rape, incest, sexual crimes against children and treason are permanently disenfranchised.

Can You Vote In Person Before Election Day? (Most restrictive)

Alabama does not allow early voting.



Absentee Voting Gets Easier

Nearly 17 percent of the U.S. electorate voted by mail in 2012

Voting Early More Often

36 states allow people to vote in person before Election Day

Who Loses the Right to Vote

All but two states have laws that keep felons from voting

Voter ID Laws Gain Momentum

But many are also being challenged in court

Recent Stories

Introducing “Ballot Watch”

Who's allowed to vote? And when? As the November midterms approach, find out how voting laws are changing state-by-state in our interactive database.

Where is Voter Discrimination the Worst?

Voting discrimination persists nationwide, but the worst offenders today are still southern states with a history of blocking minorities' access to the ballot, according to a new study by the National Commission on Voting Rights.

New Voter ID Laws Hit Setbacks

Courts are pushing back against laws in the wake of the Supreme Court’s Shelby decision. Several legal battles are still ahead.