Facts for New Citizens
Registering to Vote
After your naturalization swearing-in ceremony:
- Carefully read and complete the registration-by-mail form provided.
- Mail or return the completed registration to the Registrar of Voters Office.
Important: You must be registered at least 15 days before an election to vote in that election ( see exception below).
You will receive a notice of your eligibility to vote within a few weeks after your registration is processed.
If you become a citizen after the 15-day registration deadline, you may still be eligible to register to vote before the next election:
- You must register and vote in person at the Registrar of Voters Office at any time beginning on the 14th day before an election and ending at the close of polls on Election Day.
- Bring your Certificate of Naturalization dated after the 15-day registration deadline.
You can register online by going to the California Secretary of State's website. Paper applications are available at our elections office, any Department of Motor Vehicles field office, many post offices, public libraries, and government offices.
- Secretary of State Online Voter Registration
- Registrar of Voters Office
California law permits you to register your preference with a political party, or decline to state a party preference.
Prior to each election in which you are eligible to vote, you will receive a County Voter Information Guide which contains information on candidates and measures to be voted on in that election.
Tip: Mark your choices in the County Voter Information Guide and take it with you to the polling place to use as a reference.
At your polling place, you will find additional voting instructions and pamphlets with State initiative and local measure information.
On Election Day, polling places are open from 7:00 AM to 8:00 PM
The address of your assigned polling place is printed on the County Voter Information Guide, you may also visit our main page to access a polling place lookup site during an election. If you have questions about your polling place, please contact the Registrar of Voters Office.