Photo by Tiffany Tertipes on Unsplash

Today is National Voter Registration Day. Congrats, you’ve made it this far. We’ve busted out the traditional voter dinner rolls and have the ceremonial stickers ready to celebrate.

We’ve put together this cheat sheet for the deadlines and links you need to register, check your registration, and vote.

If you only visit one link on this page, visit SCvotes.gov.

If you’re ready to take next steps: Learn 2020 election rules and help others do the same.

Voter Registration

Check your voter registration. All you need to know is your county, date of birth, first and last name. Check your voter registration, even if you know you registered — polling places get moved and registrations can get lost, so make sure you’re covered.

Registering to vote requires a South Carolina drivers license or other state-issued identification with your current address. For the most up-to-date information, visit SCVotes.gov.

Voter registration deadlines:

In person: Oct. 2
Online or by fax: Oct. 4
By mail: Postmarked by Oct. 5

How to register to vote:

You can visit SCvotes.gov for all of the specifics of registering, but you can register online, by mail, and in person at your county board of voter registration or at the Department of Motor Vehicles.

What next?

Vote!

Absentee voting (in-person absentee OR absentee by mail)

For the latest rules, regulations, and paperwork for voting absentee, visit scvotes.gov. As of Sept. 16, all voters can vote absentee using the “state of emergency” reason. This is only for the Nov. 3 election.

Deadline to apply for an absentee ballot: Sat., Oct. 24 at 5 p.m. The state recommends you apply at least a week before the deadline, so mark your calendars for Saturday, Oct. 17.

In person-absentee: South Carolina does not have true “early voting,” but if you cannot wait to vote or want to get it out of the way, you can cast your ballot early by voting in-person absentee. Check the rules for your county, but in-person absentee voting starts Oct. 5 through and runs through Nov. 2.

Charleston County makes it easy to vote in-person absentee. Four satellite in-person absentee locations will open in October.

North Charleston Coliseum will open as an in-person absentee voting location Oct. 5. Locations open at Seacoast Mount Pleasant, Seacoast West Ashley and the Main Library downtown Oct. 19. Hours (The county election office at 4367 Headquarters Road in North Charleston will also process in-person absentee voters, but officials urge the use of larger satellite locations with thorough safety measures in place.) The latest info can be found on the county website.

Suggested mail date: Oct. 27. The United States Postal Service recommends you mail your ballot at least one week before the state deadline, so mark your calendars for Oct. 27 or earlier to make sure your ballot is delivered it in time to be counted.

Please note: if you’re voting absentee by mail, do not forget to sign the ballot. Witness signatures are not required for the 2020 general election.

Ballots must be received by Nov. 3.

You can also drop your ballot off in person at the County Board of Elections and Voter Registration, or at the four satellite voting locations (see above).

If someone else is dropping off a ballot for you: Fill out the Authorization to Return Absentee Ballot Form, mailed with every absentee ballot.

Election Day: Nov. 3

If you’re voting in person on election day: Mask up and bring a government-issued photo ID. If something happens, ask for a provisional ballot. Reminder: No campaign materials are allowed within 200 feet of the polling place, clothing and stickers included.

If you have a problem voting or feel like your rights have been infringed upon, call Election Protection Hotline (866-OUR-VOTE) or the the Department of Justice Voting Rights Hotline (800-253-3931).