Frequently Asked Questions

For Voters

WHO SHOULD REGISTER TO VOTE?

Winnebago County residents who are not registered to vote and who meet the following Illinois voter qualifications should register:

  1. Must be a citizen of the United States
  2. ​Must be at least 18 years old – However, if you are going to be 18 years old in a General Election year prior to that General Election, you may register and vote in that years’ Primary Election (providing you meet all qualifications)
  3. Must be a resident of the State for at least 30 days

WHEN CAN I REGISTER?

You can register at any Election Authority during their normal office hours.  The only time you cannot register is during a period from 28 days prior to an election until the 2nd day after the election is held.

WHAT INFORMATION DO I NEED TO REGISTER?

You need to present two (2) forms of I.D. One needs to have your current address listed with your name and the second form can be anything with just your name on it.  Example:  A current Drivers License and your Social Security Card.

WHERE CAN I REGISTER?

Click the link below for a list of Deputy Registrars in Winnebago County.

http://winnebago.il.clerkserve.com/wp-content/uploads/DeputyRegistrar
locations jma.pdf

WHAT DO I DO WHEN I HAVE MOVED AND CHANGED MY ADDRESS?

If you have moved from outside the City of Rockford to another residence outside the City of Rockford, you can turn your voter registration card over and in the space provided, give your new address and mail or bring it to our office.  Please remember to sign and put a phone number.  If you have moved inside the City of Rockford, you will need to re-register to vote.

WHAT IF I GET MARRIED OR CHANGE MY NAME?

Someone changing their last name due to a marriage needs to register with a Deputy Registrar.  Click the link following for a list of the locations of Deputy Registrars.  http://winnebago.il.clerkserve.com/wp-content/uploads/DeputyRegistrar
locations jma.pdf   When you change your Drivers License to your new name, you can also change your Voter Registration.  If you hyphenate your last name, you still need to re-register.

ABSENTEE VOTING

WHO MAY VOTE BY ABSENTEE BALLOT?

Persons who are registered in Winnebago County are eligible to cast an absentee ballot. In addition, the following unregistered voters are eligible to vote by absentee ballot:

  • Members of the Uniformed Service or merchant marine on active duty, or eligible spouses or dependents
  • U.S. citizens temporarily residing outside the U.S.
  • U.S. citizens overseas by virtue of employment or accompanying their spouses or dependents
  • Other U.S. citizens residing outside the U.S.

IF YOU FALL INTO ANY OF THE ABOVE FOUR UNREGISTERED VOTER CATEGORIES, PLEASE CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW TO PRINT AN ABSENTEE APPLICATION.

http://winnebago.il.clerkserve.com/wp-content/uploads/A-2.pdf

ABSENTEE VOTING BY MAIL

Voters need to obtain an application for an absentee ballot.  To obtain an application,the voter would need to either call the County Clerks’ office at 815-319-4252, write to our office requesting an application or download the application from this website. Complete the application, including your signature and if the ballot is to be mailed to a different address other than your home address, you need to include that address.  Return the application to the County Clerks’ office in person or by mail.
Your ballot will be mailed to you within 2 days.  PLEASE REMEMBER:  By state law, our office may not mail ballots less than five days prior to the election.

Once you have received your absentee ballot, follow all enclosed instructions to vote the ballot and return it to the County Clerks’ Office.  Voted ballots may be returned by mail (must be post-marked by Election Day) or may be returned in person by Election Day.

HOW TO BECOME AN ELECTION JUDGE

In order to become an election judge, registered voters need to be of one party affiliation or another.  You determine your party affiliation when you vote in the primaries and select a ballot for one of the established parties.  Election judges are responsible for the proper and lawful conduct of the election in the polling place.  Election judges are commissioned as officers of the Circuit Court and are required to take an oath to uphold the constitutions of the United States and the State of Illinois.

Interested in becoming an Election Judge?  Please contact the Election Dept. of the County Clerks’ office at 815-319-4252.

For Candidates

CAMPAIGN DISCLOSURE INFORMATION

The Illinois Campaign Disclosure Act applies to all candidates for public office, groups of candidates or political action committees (PAC) who have accepted contributions or made expenditures in excess of $3,000 within a 12-month period, in support of or in opposition to (1) a candidate or candidates for public office, or (2) any question of public policy to be submitted to the voters. Once the threshold has been reached, the Act requires that the committee file campaign disclosure documents with the State Board of Elections and, if applicable, the county clerk. Find more information at Illinois State Board of Elections.