California Elections
  • Every Registered Voter in the State of California must be allowed vote in every election.
  • Vote by Mail ballots are sent out and arrive approximately 28 (twenty-eight) days prior to Election Day for those people who have opted to Vote By Mail.
  • Every registered Voter who lives in a County that has chosen to implement the Voter’s Choice Act will receive a Vote by Mail ballot devoid of having opted in to do so.
  • You are NOT required to vote by mail and may choose to vote in person.

The Voter’s Choice Act

Polling Places have been renamed “Vote Centers” which begin opening 10 (ten) days (two (2) Saturdays) prior to Election Day through:

  1. The Friday before Election Day. During this time frame one (1) Vote Center is required for every 50,000 registered voters.
  2. Three (3) days prior to (Saturday, Sunday, and Monday) Election Day, one (1) Vote Center is required for every 10,000 registered voters.

Vote Centers will continue to provide the same function as Polling Places which include replacement ballots, turning in a completed Vote by Mail ballot, correcting or modifying registration, casting a ballot in-person, utilizing  electronic voting and multiple language election information.

Same Day Registration or Conditional Voters must present themselves to the Registrars Office to cast a ballot or cast a Provisional Ballot which will not be counted until registration requirements are validated.

The main difference between Polling Places and Vote Centers is the ability of a Registered Voter to use any Voter Center in the County to cast a ballot without being forced to cast a Provisional Ballot.

Voting in Person

If a Voter wants to vote in person we suggest bringing in the entire Vote by Mail ballot to surrender, marked ballots may also be surrendered.  The Election Clerk is required to “spoil” the ballot by writing “SURRENDERED” across all the ballots. The Voter is then issued a “live” or “fresh” ballot to complete at the Vote Center. Ballots issued at the Vote Center may not leave the Vote Center, they must be cast or destroyed.

If the Vote By Mail ballot is not “surrendered” at the Voter Center, a Voter may still cast a live provisional ballot.

Returning a Vote By Mail Ballot

Vote by Mail ballots can be returned 3 ways:


    • Picture of an envelope. 1. Mail the ballot;
    • Picture of a mailbox. 2. Drop the ballot in a secure county ballot drop box; or
    • Picture of a building. 3. Visit any vote center in the county.


It is highly recommend Voters physically return a completed ballot to a Vote Center or County Registrar to reduce the likelihood of the ballot being “harvested” while waiting to be retrieved, during retrieval or in transit.

We do NOT suggest allowing anyone to “harvest” your ballot.  A ballot should  be considered far more valuable than the most valuable thing in your life. NEVER hand over a “live” or completed  ballot to a complete stranger. If you receive more than one Vote by Mail Ballot, destroy the extra ballot.

Voting Irregularities

Voting Irregularities are any experience by the Voter that exceeds the bounds of what is a normal voting experience.

1. Registration

  • Party Changed
  • De-Registered


2. Vote by Mail

  • Didn’t receive a ballot
  • Received more than one ballot


3. Vote Center

  • Not Open
  • Did Not Have Ballots
  • Gave wrong Information
  • Would not let you vote
Nonprofit Voter Projects

Election Integrity Project- California®

“The goal of EIP-CA is to defend the integrity of the voting process through research, observation and documentation.”

  • Statements of first-hand accounts of potential fraud or corruption that were either witnessed or a victim of are recorded on an EIP-CA Incident Statement.
  • Statements should be factual instead of an opinion as they have the potential to be used in legal proceedings.
  • Additional documentation may be attached to the form and submitted. We suggest keeping a copy of all documentation submitted
  • All Statements must be originals, signed in blue ink, and submitted via post to EIP-CA. (address is located on the incident form)
  • Once submitted the statement is first reviewed by EIP- CA and then shared with Landmark Legal Foundation for review.
City Election Issues:

Contact your city clerk. (See California Roster)

County Election Issues:

Contact your County Elections Official. (See County Roster)

State Election Issues:

Contact the California Secretary of State:
Elections Division
1500 11th Street, 5th Floor
Sacramento, CA 95814

Comments and suggestions
(916) 657-2166 or (800) 345-VOTE (8683)

Federal Election Issues:

Federal Election Commission:
999 E Street, NW
Washington, DC 20463
Emails: FEC and federal campaign finance law:
Campaign finance reports and data:
(800) 424-9530


United States Department of Justice – Public Integrity Section:

U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001
(202) 514-1412


    Party Preference Changed De-Registered Other

    Received Wrong Party Ballot Received More Than One Ballot Did Not Receive Ballot Other

    Voter Center Not Open Correct Ballot Not Available Not Allowed to Vote Vote Center Location

    Primary Election General Election