How to Vote

General Information

Based on legislation that passed in the 2021 session of the Maryland General Assembly and information from the Board of Elections, we can expect a return to many of the voting procedures that were used in the 2018 election with a few changes. More detailed information will be posted on both the Montgomery County and Maryland State Board of Elections websites closer to the election.


Three Ways to Vote


Method One: Mail-in Ballot

Any registered voter in Maryland may vote by mail-in ballot. You don't need a reason to vote by mail-in ballot.

Note: A recent change in the law requires the State Board of Elections and each local board of elections to refer to absentee ballots as "mail-in ballots" and absentee voting as "mail-in voting."

Voters must first request a mail-in ballot. Voters can return their voted ballot after signing the envelope to one of the secure Ballot Drop boxes or by the U.S. mail.  Voted ballots must be postmarked by Election Day or deposited in a Drop Box by 8:00pm on Election Day in order to be counted.

New for 2022 Primary Election (but only after procedures are set by the Board of Elections):

  • All registered voters may choose to sign up to be on a Permanent Mail-in Ballot List. Voters on this list will be sent a Mail-in ballot before every election. These voters will not have to fill out a new application for each election. 
  • Voters may also ask to be removed from the Permanent Mail-in Ballot list.
  • Voters who have not requested Permanent Mail-in Ballot status will be sent an application for a Mail-in Ballot before the 2022 and 2024 primary elections. Voters who complete and return the application to the Board of Elections by the deadline date will also be sent a Mail-in Ballot for the election(s) selected.


Method Two: Vote in person during Early Voting

Voters may go to any Early Voting Center during the early voting period, normally a seven day period before Election Day, and vote in person.

Registered voters can also update their address or name at Early Voting.

Same day registration–Residents who have not already registered to vote in Maryland may both register and vote the same day, provided they bring identification.

Early Voting Centers are not open on Election Day unless they also serve as a precinct polling place.

New for 2022:

  • Longer hours—Early Voting Centers will be open from 7:00am – 8:00pm.
  • More Early Voting Centers-- Montgomery County currently has eleven (11) Early Voting Centers. New legislation authorizes the establishment of two or three more. This requires approval by the Montgomery County and Maryland State Board of Elections.


Method Three: Vote in person on Election Day at assigned precinct polling place

Voters must use their assigned precinct polling place to vote on Election Day, or they will have to vote a provisional ballot.

Note: The use of Vote Centers was authorized only for 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  For 2022, voters will return to their assigned neighborhood precinct polling place, which may differ from prior elections due to redistricting (see below).

Same day registration—Residents who have not already registered to vote in Maryland may both register and vote on Election Day, provided they bring identification.

New for 2022 – Election Districts May Change  

  • District borders for congressional districts, legislative districts (Maryland General Assembly), and County Council may change before the 2022 election because of reapportionment and redistricting after the 2020 census and approval of two additional County Council District representatives by the voters in 2020.
  • Voters will be notified by the Board of Elections of any changes to their assigned districts and assigned Election Day precinct polling place.


Keep Your Voter Registration Up to Date

Whether you vote by mail or in person, you should make sure that your registration is up to date. You can check your voter registration at Voter Lookup and update your address if necessary. If you are not registered to vote in Maryland, you may register online. Also see How Do I Register.


League publications 

Handy reference documents. Note: links to these documents coming soon.


More Information


Want to learn more?

For more information on topics studied by our League, see the Making Democracy Work Committee.