Elections & Voting

For all election-related dates, see the Secretary of the Commonwealth’s Elections Calendar.

Visit our Voter Registration page to find out how and where to register to vote.

In Massachusetts, you must register to vote twenty days prior to the date of the election, and must be 18 years old on the date of election.
You may submit an application to register or pre-register to vote in Massachusetts if:

  • You are a citizen of the United States; and
  • You are 16 years old; and
  • You are not currently incarcerated by reason of a felony conviction.

The League of Women Voters advocated for the following election modernization legislation, which was passed into law in 2014.

  • Pre-registration for 16 and 17 year old citizens. These citizens may pre-register (using the same procedure as registration), then will become registered voters when they turn 18.
  • Early voting for state and presidential elections. Beginning with the November 8, 2016 State Election, Massachusetts voters were able to cast their ballots before Election Day (biennial state elections) for the first time. During the October 24th-November 4th early voting period, over 1 million ballots were cast across the Commonwealth. More than 22% of Massachusetts registered voters took advantage of early voting.

In 2018, the League actively advocated for the passage of Automatic Voter Registration (AVR).

Automatic voter registration (AVR). Citizens would automatically be registered through the Registry of Motor Vehicles and other state agencies.

This session (ending in 2022), the League is advocating for the VOTES act, which, among other measures, would make the temporary pandemic-era provisions permanent, as summarized below.

The VOTES Act (H804/S459) will make several permanent changes to Massachusetts’ election laws, including: allowing voters to vote by mail without an excuse; expanding early voting options; establishing same day voter registration; ensuring that the Commonwealth joins the 30-state Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC) to keep voter registration rolls up-to-date; implementing risk limiting audits, the “gold standard” of post-election audits; making sure that eligible voters who are incarcerated are able to request a mail ballot and vote; and more.