Voter ID

Voting with ID infographic
View infographic of acceptable IDs

Wisconsin law requires voters to present a photo ID for their vote to count.

Your photo ID does not need to show a current address. Poll workers will check the type of ID, name and photograph on the ID, and the date the ID expires.

When it comes to voting, it does not matter if your Wisconsin ID or license complies with the federal Real ID Act of 2005 . Wisconsin ID cards that do not meet Real ID requirements are acceptable forms of voter ID.

Our goal is for each eligible voter to be able to cast a ballot and have that ballot counted.

Acceptable Forms of Photo ID

  • Wisconsin driver license*
  • WI DOT-issued photo ID card*
  • U.S. passport*
  • Military ID card*
  • Certificate of naturalization issued within last 2 years
  • Unexpired Wisconsin driver license or state ID receipt
  • ID card issued by a Native American Tribe, regardless of expiration
  • ID issued by a Wisconsin accredited university or college. ID must show the date issued and student signature. It must also show an expiration date within 2 years of issuance.  If the ID is expired, proof of current enrollment is also required.
  • Unexpired Veterans Affairs ID card

*The expiration date must be after the date of the last November election.

Obtaining a Photo ID

If you are eligible to vote but do not have a Wisconsin license or ID card, you may get a free ID for voting. If you do not have all the required documents, you may petition the DMV to verify your identity.

For the shortest lines, visit the DMV mid-morning or mid-afternoon. Avoid Mondays, Fridays, and the beginning and end of each month. ID customers get priority service at the DMV.

The Dane County Voter ID Coalition offers free help with the DMV application process. They also offer free rides to the DMV . This is a joint effort of the League of Women Voters of Dane County and the Dane County NAACP. For help, call (608) 285-2141.

Vote Absentee

Absentee voters casting a ballot in person at a satellite voting location must show a photo ID .

Absentee requests for ballots sent by mail must include a copy or picture of an acceptable type of voter ID. Once the Clerk’s Office has your ID on file, you do not need to send another copy until you update your voter registration. Please read your absentee ballot instruction letter very carefully. We want your vote to count!

Hospitalized voters may appoint an agent to pick up their ballot from the City Clerk’s Office. The agent needs to bring the hospitalized voter’s photo ID to the Clerk’s Office.

Provisional Ballots

Voters unable to show an acceptable photo ID on Election Day may cast a provisional ballot.

Provisional ballots count if the voter provides the Clerk’s Office with an acceptable ID by 4 p.m. the Friday after the election.

Senior Citizens

Wisconsin residents who are U.S. citizens age 65 and over may get a Wisconsin ID card that never expires. This ID is acceptable for voting purposes. The non-expiring ID card doesn’t meet the “Real ID” standards required for air travel. A licensed driver cannot get a non-expiring ID card without surrendering driving privileges.

Indefinitely confined senior citizens and care facility residents do not need an ID when voting absentee. Read about these exemptions and others.

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