Residency Requirements

To register to vote in Washington State, you must be a resident of the state.

You must establish your voting residency address at least 30 days before Election Day. You may specify a mailing address that is different from your residential address.

You may only be registered to vote at one location, even if you own multiple residences. If you move or are temporarily away, you may maintain your voter registration at that address until you register to vote elsewhere.

If you have a nontraditional address, such as a motor home or transitional housing, your voting residence is the physical location at the time you register to vote. You may list a different address for your mailing address.

If you are a United States citizen living abroad, you may use your last Washington address. If you have never lived in the country, you may use the last address of your parents or other family member.

Even if you are living outside of Washington State, you will retain your residency if you are:

  • A citizen of the United States;
  • A legal resident of Washington State;
  • At least 18 years old by Election Day;
  • Not disqualified from voting due to a court order; and
  • Not under Department of Corrections supervision for a Washington felony conviction.

You may maintain your voter registration in Washington State until you register to vote elsewhere.

For more information about voting residence, see Article VI, Sections 1 and 4 of the Washington State Constitution,  RCW 29A.04.151, and RCW 29A.08.112.

Voters without traditional residential addresses.

No person registering to vote, who meets all the qualifications of a registered voter in the state of Washington, shall be disqualified because he or she lacks a traditional residential address. A voter who lacks a traditional residential address will be registered and assigned to a precinct based on the location provided.

A voter who resides in a shelter, park, motor home, marina, unmarked home, or other identifiable location that the voter deems to be his or her residence lacks a traditional address. A voter who registers under this section must provide a valid mailing address, and must still meet the requirement in Article VI, section 1 of the state Constitution that he or she live in the area for at least thirty days before the election.

                                                                                                                             (RCW 29A.08.112)

To challenge a voter registration, you must file a Voter Challenge  with the county elections department where that person is registered.