Mover's Guide: Tennessee

August 10, 2010

Division of Elections: 615-741-7956

I moved from the address at which I am registered.  What should I do?

I moved from another state.

If you moved to Tennessee from another state, you must register to vote in Tennessee to be able to vote.[1]  The last day to register in time to vote in the next election is thirty days before the election.[2]

If you moved from out of state, you may register to vote the same day you become a resident of the State of Tennessee.  And, under federal law, if you move within thirty days of a federal election, you are allowed to vote for President and Vice President in your former state of residence, either in person or by absentee ballot.[3]

I moved within Tennessee.

If you moved within the same county, you should submit a signed document stating your new address to your county election commission office to update your address.[4]  If you moved to a different county, you should complete a new registration form to update your registration records.[5]  That form is available here: http://state.tn.us/sos/election/address_changes.htm

The election is right around the corner and I never updated my registration from my previous address.  What should I do?

If you moved to a new address within the same county since you last voted, you should contact your local election office to determine whether your registration is current and to find out the location of your current polling place.  Election officials may have changed your registration to reflect your new address even if you did not notify the election official about the move.[6]  If your information has been changed to your current address, you should go to the polling place associated with that address to vote.

Many registered Tennessee voters who move are still entitled to cast a ballot that will be counted — even if they did not notify the appropriate election official about their move before Election Day and the election official has not changed their registration.

Scenario One: New Address, but Same Polling Place

If you moved to a new address that is covered by the same polling place as your old address, you can vote a regular ballot after confirming your change of address at the polling place.[7]  This is true regardless of how close to the election you moved.[8]

Scenario Two: New Address in Same County but New Polling Place

If you moved to a new address within the same county but with a new polling place, you can:

  • Vote a ballot for your new precinct at an early voting location after confirming your new address.[9]
  • Go to the polling place associated with your old address on Election Day, affirm your new address in writing, and have the election official confirm that you have not voted at your old polling place.  You can then go to the polling place for your new address or a central location established by the county election commission, show the confirmation, and vote a regular ballot.[10]
  • Vote at your new polling place after confirming your current address in writing.[11]  The fact that you are registered must be confirmed by the county election commission before the vote is counted.[12]

Scenario Three: New Address in New County

If you moved to a new address that is in a different county in the state within 90 days of an election, you can vote at the polling place associated with your old address.[13]

If you moved to a new address in a different county in the state more than 90 days before an election, you should complete a new registration form to update your registration records for that new address.[14]


[1] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-1-105 (West 2010).

[2] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-2-109(a)-(b) (the deadline is extended by one day if it falls on a weekend or holiday).

[3] 42 U.S.C. § 1973aa-1(e) (2010).

[4] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-2-129(a)(1).

[5] See Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 2-2-129(a)(2); see also Tennessee Department of State, Address, Name, and Voting Status Changes, http://www.state.tn.us/sos/election/address_change.htm (last visited June 8, 2010).

[6] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-2-129(b) (West 2010).

[7] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-7-140(b); 42 U.S.C. § 1973gg-6(e)(1) (2010).

[8] 42 U.S.C. § 1973gg-6(e)(1) (2010).

[9] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-7-140(c)(1).

[10] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-7-140(c)(2)(A).

[11] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-7-140(c)(3).

[12] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-7-140(c)(3).

[13] Tenn. Code Ann. § 2-7-115(a).

[14] See Tenn. Code Ann. §§ 2-2-129(a)(2), 2-7-115(a)