Felons and Voting Rights
If you were convicted of a felony in Washington State, your right to vote is restored as long as you are not under the authority (in prison or on community custody) of the Department of Corrections (DOC). Once your right is restored, you must re-register to vote in order to receive a ballot.
If you have questions about your status with DOC, you can call (800) 430-9674.
Restoring your right to vote
- If you were convicted of a felony in a Washington State court, your right to vote is restored unless you are currently under the authority of DOC (in prison or on community custody). If you have questions about whether you are on community custody, call DOC at (800) 430-9674.
- If you were convicted of a felony in another state or in federal court, your right to vote is restored as long as you are not currently incarcerated for that felony.
- Once your right to vote is restored, you must re-register in order to receive a ballot. You can re-register online with MyVote, by mail, or in person.
- You do not lose the right to vote for a misdemeanor conviction or a conviction in juvenile court.
Three times a year, the Secretary of State uses information provided by DOC and the state court system to screen the list of registered voters for ineligible felons. If you are registered to vote, but are ineligible because of a felony conviction, you will be sent a letter explaining that your registration will be cancelled in 30 days.The letter provides information on how to dispute the cancellation (RCW 29A.08.520).
Maintaining your right to vote
- Do not commit another felony.
- If you have willfully failed to make three payments in a 12 month period, the prosecutor can request the court to revoke your voting rights. If you show you have made a good-faith effort to pay, your voting rights can be restored by the court.
To challenge a voter registration, you must file a Voter Challenge with the county elections department where that person is registered.