Voter ID

On June 1, 2023, the Governor signed into law LB514, which establishes voter identification (ID) requirements for elections in Nebraska. 

The first election requiring voter ID will be the May 14, 2024, statewide primary election.

All special and statewide elections after this date will require voter ID.
No special election prior to May 14, 2024, will require voter ID.

Acceptable forms of photo ID: Nebraska driver's license, Nebraska state ID, Nebraska college ID, Nebraska political subdivision ID, such as an ID from a state, county, city, public school, etc.), hospital, assisted-living or nursing home record, military ID, tribal ID, and U.S. passport.

For more information about acceptable IDs, please see the FAQ below. 

How to get a free ID 

Voters can get a free state ID for voting purposes at the Nebraska DMV. They will need to bring documents confirming their identity and their address when applying for a state ID. 

  • To find more information about getting a state ID, click here.
  • To find your local DMV office, click here.

Nebraskans who need a copy of their birth certificate to get a free state ID can get a free certified copy of their Nebraska birth certificate from the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Vital Records. A birth certificate is not an acceptable form of photo ID. 

How voter ID will work with voting

Voting in person 

  • Present an acceptable form of photo ID
  • OR present reasonable impediment certification
  • OR vote provisionally

Voting early at the county election office

  • Present an acceptable form of photo ID
  • OR present reasonable impediment certification
  • OR vote provisionally

Voting early by mail

  • Write driver's license or state ID number on the early voting application
  • OR enclose a photocopy of acceptable form of ID
  • OR enclose a photocopy of reasonable impediment certification

Voting in by-mail precincts or by-mail special elections:

  • Write driver's license or state ID number on the ballot return envelope
  • OR enclose a photocopy of acceptable form of ID
  • OR enclose a photocopy of reasonable impediment certification

Voter ID education material

The Secretary of State's office updated the Voter ID English and Spanish brochures in November 2023.
For the best print, select "Fit" under Page Sizing and Handling. Select "Print on both sides of paper" and "Flip on short edge." Under page orientation, select "landscape."  

Voter ID educational events

The Secretary of State's office is holding statewide educational events throughout 2024 to inform voters on Nebraska's new voter ID law. Event details will be posted as they become available.

The office is taking requests  on events such as conferences, speaking engagements, fairs, parades and other similar opportunities

About the Secretary of State's statewide educational campaign

Educating Nebraskans about the state’s new voter ID law is a priority for the Secretary of State’s office. Since the law was passed in June 2023, the office has engaged with media partners and community groups across Nebraska to educate citizens on the new voter ID law. This includes creating and updating a webpage dedicated to voter ID, creating English and Spanish educational brochures, publishing and distributing news releases, collaborating with Nebraska journalists in news stories, participating in radio and TV talk show appearances, posting educational material on social media, speaking at community group engagements and hosting a large educational event at the 2023 Nebraska State Fair.

In January 2024, the Secretary of State’s office launched an official public awareness campaign that includes educational social media posts with paid social media advertising on Facebook, X (formerly Twitter) and Instagram. It also includes the initial phase of outdoor billboard advertising. The full media strategy will begin on March 11, 2024, with the addition of static billboards, broadcast television, connected television, traditional and rural radio, digital audio, and YouTube digital video.  It also includes advertising in Nebraska’s 144 statewide weekly newspapers, Buenos Dias Nebraska, Mundo Latino, Omaha Star, Que Pasa and Winnebago Indian News. The educational campaign includes repeated messaging in English and Spanish for a sustained period of time, 9 weeks, in advance of the primary election on May 14, 2024, and the general election on November 5, 2024.

Frequently Asked Questions

This guidance document is advisory in nature but is binding on an agency until amended by such agency. A guidance document does not include internal procedural documents that only affect the internal operations of the agency and does not impose additional requirements or penalties on regulated parties or include confidential information or rules and regulations made in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act. If you believe that this guidance document imposes additional requirements or penalties on regulated parties, you may request a review of the document.

Voter ID Law

Why is Nebraska implementing a voter ID law?

In the 2022 General Election, the majority of Nebraska voters passed a constitutional amendment requiring photo ID in Nebraska elections. In response, the Nebraska Legislature passed legislation that enacted Nebraska’s new voter ID law. 

What has changed in the Nebraska voting process?

Nebraska’s new voter ID law (LB514) requires all registered Nebraska voters, with limited exceptions, to present an acceptable form of photo ID when voting in Nebraska elections starting with the May 14, 2024, statewide primary election.

When does the law take effect?

Voter ID begins with the May 2024 statewide primary. Every election in Nebraska after the May 14, 2024, statewide primary will require voter ID.

Do voters need to present an acceptable form of photo ID for every election?

Yes, voters must present an acceptable form of photo ID before casting a ballot in every primary, general and special election. Active-duty military members, active-duty spouses and overseas voters covered by Uniformed & Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) are not required to present photo ID when voting unless they are a registered Nebraska voter casting a ballot in person at a Nebraska polling site.

Acceptable Forms of ID

What are acceptable forms of photo ID?

ID must have your name and photo. ID can be expired. Acceptable forms of photo ID are:

  • Nebraska driver's license (from DMV)
  • Nebraska state ID (from DMV)
  • Nebraska college ID (public or private)
  • Nebraska political subdivision ID (state, county, city, public school, etc.)
  • United States (U.S.) Passport
  • Military ID
  • Tribal ID
  • Hospital, assisted-living facility or nursing home record

What IDs will not be accepted?

  • Birth certificate
  • Medicare or Medicaid card
  • Out-of-state driver's license 
  • Out-of-state college ID
  • Social Security card
  • Store membership card
  • Utility bill
  • Bank statement
  • Voter registration acknowledgement card

Is a photo ID from a Nebraska private high school considered an acceptable form of ID?

No. A private high school is not a political subdivision of the State of Nebraska.

Is a faculty or staff ID from a Nebraska state post-secondary institution considered an acceptable form of photo ID?

Yes, if the ID contains the voter’s name and photo

Do voters need a special voter card to vote?

There is not a special Secretary of State-issued voter card for the new voter ID law. There are many acceptable forms of photo ID that voters may have and can be used to vote, such as a Nebraska driver’s license or state ID. 

What do voters do if they don’t have an acceptable form of photo ID?

Nebraska voters should double-check that they don’t already have a form of ID that’s acceptable to use for Nebraska’s new voter ID law. Driver’s licenses, state IDs, U.S. passports, military IDs, tribal IDs, Nebraska college IDs and political subdivision IDs are all acceptable forms of ID to use for Nebraska’s new voter ID law.

A Nebraska voter who was born outside of Nebraska may have to pay a fee for a copy of their birth certificate from their home state. How do they vote if they cannot obtain a photo ID?

Voters who are unable to obtain an acceptable form of photo ID due to a lack of birth certificate or other required documents can complete a reasonable impediment certification form and vote a provisional ballot. The ballot will be counted if the provisional envelope and reasonable impediment certification form are complete, and the signature matches the voter’s registration record.

The voter has applied for a Nebraska driver’s license/state ID but has not received it. Can the voter use the DMV receipt to vote?

Yes, Nebraska DMV driver’s license or state ID receipts that contain a photograph can be used for voting purposes. LB514 (2022) requires the DMV to issue driver’s license or state ID receipts with the applicant’s photo.

Are military and overseas voters required to present photo ID?

No, active-duty military members, active-duty spouses and overseas voters covered by UOCAVA, who are outside of Nebraska, are not required to present photo ID.

  • Note: Active-duty military members and spouses who are stationed and registered to vote in Nebraska are not covered by UOCAVA and must present photo ID. 

Does the name on the photo ID need to exactly match the voter registration?

No, the name on the photo ID does not need to exactly match the voter’s registration.

  • Photo IDs can contain:
    • A nickname (e.g., “Joe” instead of “Joseph”)
    • A new last name (“Jane Smith” instead of “Jane Doe”)
  • Voters can still change their name (due to marriage, divorce, legal name change, etc.) at their polling place on election day and vote a regular ballot.
    ​The voter has the following options:
    • If it’s a nickname or incorrect spelling, the voter can fill out an updated voter registration form at the polling place and cast a regular ballot.
    • If the ID is in a new name and the voter registration record is in the old name, the voter can proceed to fill out an updated voter registration form at the polling place and may cast a regular ballot.
    • If the ID is in an old name and the voter registration record is in a new name, the voter will vote provisionally and would need to present an acceptable form of photo ID with their new name on or before the Tuesday after the election.

What happens when a poll worker determines the photo does not resemble the person voting or they believe the ID to be fake?

The voter may cast a provisional ballot, and the vote will be counted when or if they present an acceptable form of photo ID to their county election office on or before the Tuesday following the election. If the same ID is presented during the curing period and both the poll worker and election official are unable to verify it is the person, the ballot would not count.

Can a Nebraska driver’s license or state ID number for an early voting application be provided over the phone?

No, the voter must write the Nebraska driver’s license or state ID number on their early voting application form.

What is considered an acceptable form of ID from a hospital, an assisted living facility, a nursing home or other skilled care facility?

The voter’s facility record, commonly referred to as a “face sheet,” from the eligible facility is an acceptable form of photo ID. Facility listings for Nebraska counties can be found on the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) website.

Is the employee ID of a private hospital or nursing home an acceptable form of photo ID for voting?

Yes, it qualifies as a care facility record. The ID must contain the voter’s name and photo.

What if I can’t afford an ID?

You can get a free ID for voting purposes at the Nebraska DMV. You will need to bring documents confirming your identity and your address when applying for a state ID.

  • To find more information about getting a state ID, click here.
  • To find your local DMV office, click here

What if I can’t get an ID?

If you have a reasonable impediment, you can complete a certification instead of presenting an acceptable form of photo ID.
Reasonable impediments are:

  • Inability to obtain an acceptable form of ID due to:
    • Disability or illness 
    • Lack of birth certificate or other required documents
  • Religious objection to being photographed.

Early Voting

When a voter chooses to vote early, is their photo ID information collected when applying for the early ballot or when returning the early ballot?

  • If a voter requests an early voting ballot, they will need to write their driver’s license/state ID number on the application or enclose a copy of an acceptable form of photo ID or reasonable impediment certification with their early voting ballot application. The voter will not provide the ID again when returning the ballot.
  • If a voter is automatically sent a ballot (in a by-mail precinct or by-mail special election), they will need to write their driver’s license/state ID number in the space provided on the ballot return envelope or enclose a copy of an acceptable form of photo ID or reasonable impediment certification form in the ballot return envelope.

Can a voter email or fax a photocopy or picture of their acceptable form of photo ID (i.e., tribal ID/military ID/U.S. Passport) with their early voting application?

Yes. Early voting applications can be emailed, faxed or mailed as long as they are physically signed; the photo ID must also be included with that transmission. The photocopy or image can be in black and white, but it must be clearly legible.

Election Day

What will the poll worker be looking for on the photo ID?

Poll workers will look for the voter’s photo and the voter’s name. 

An acceptable photo ID for voting:

  • Does not need to include an expiration date.
  • Does not need to include an address
  • Can be expired.
  • Can contain an out-of-state address.

Can a poll worker ask the voter to remove the photo ID from a wallet?

Yes, a poll worker can ask a voter to remove their photo ID from their wallet if it obscures the voter’s name or photo.

The poll worker at a polling site already knows the voter. Does the voter still need to present photo ID?

Yes, voters without a reasonable impediment are required to present an acceptable form of photo ID regardless of the poll worker knowing the voter.

Can a voter show a photocopy or an image of their photo ID on their phone to an election official in person rather than presenting the original photo ID?

No, the voter must present the original photo ID to vote, whether that’s at the polls, early in person at the election office, or on or before the Tuesday after the election when voting provisionally.

What if the voter shows up to vote on Election Day and does not have a photo ID or forgets their ID?

  • Registered voters who arrive to vote without an acceptable form of photo ID may go home to retrieve their photo ID, without signing in, and return with their ID prior to the close of polls to cast a regular ballot. 
  • Alternatively, the voter will be offered a provisional ballot. The voter will still be able to cast their vote, but their ballot will only count if the voter presents an acceptable form of ID to their county election office, in person, on or before the Tuesday following the election.

Reasonable Impediment Certification

What is a Reasonable Impediment Certification (RIC)?

A RIC is a form that can be completed instead of presenting an acceptable form of photo ID.
Reasonable impediments are: 

  • Inability to obtain an acceptable form of ID due to:
    • Disability or illness
    • Lack of birth certificate or other required documents
  • Religious objection to being photographed.

How does a voter complete a reasonable impediment certification form?

There are several ways a voter could submit a reasonable impediment certification form. 

  • The voter can provide it with the early voting ballot application. 
    • If the voter lives in a by-mail precinct, they will include it in their ballot envelope.
  • The voter can complete it when voting early in-person.
  • The voter can fill out the certification at their polling place on election day.
    • Poll workers will not decide on the validity of the reasonable impediment certifications; these will be sent with the provisional envelope to the local election office for verification. The county election office will verify the signature on the certification to the voter’s voter registration record to determine whether or not the ballot is counted.

Does a voter have to fill out a reasonable impediment certification form every time they vote – even if it’s for religious exemption or a long-term disability?

Yes, the form must be completed each time a voter will cast a ballot.

Curing Process

Can a provisional voter submit their acceptable form of photo ID on or before the Tuesday after the election through any other method than in person (e.g., email, fax, mail, agent)?

 No, the provisional voter must go to the office in person and present an acceptable form of photo ID.

Thank you for taking the time to learn about voter ID. This page will be updated as more educational materials and information is available.