N.Y. Election Law Section 5-500
Registration records

  • form and content


There shall be two records of the registration of each voter. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, one record shall be sent, at the time of every election, to the polling place where the voter is entitled to vote, and shall be known as the “registration poll record”. Between elections it shall be kept in the main office or a branch office of the board of elections. The other record shall be kept constantly in such main office or branch office and shall be known as the “central file registration record”. The two types of records shall be prepared in different colors.


The face of each registration record, at or before its use, shall have entered at the top the name of the county in which it is to be used and a registration serial number, which shall be different for each voter but the same for the two records of each voter.


The central file registration records shall be printed on one side only, and shall be identical in substance, printing and arrangement with the face of the registration poll records.


The central file registration records and the face of the registration poll records shall contain a space for the voter’s signature, preceded by the words, “The foregoing statements are true”, and followed by the signature of the two members of the board of inspectors or central registration board by whom the voter is registered. In addition, there shall be spaces for the following entries, all of which shall precede the space for the voter’s signature:


Serial number assigned to voter and county of registration;


The voter’s surname, given name and initials of other names;


The date of registration;


The residence address at which the voter claims to reside and post office address, if not the same; and the number or designation of the room, apartment, or floor occupied by the voter if he or she does not claim the entire building as his or her residence; and in addition, space for the furnishing of an e-mail address, the furnishing of which shall be optional, together with a notice stating that if an e-mail address is furnished, all notices and communications otherwise required to be sent by the state board of elections to the voter by postal mail shall be sent by e-mail in addition to postal mail. County boards of elections and the board of elections of the city of New York shall have the option of sending notices and communications otherwise required to be sent to the voter by postal mail by e-mail in addition to postal mail if the voter furnishes an e-mail address;


The assembly district or ward and the election district in which such residence address is located;


The length of the voter’s residence in the county or city calculated to the time of the next general election;


Whether the voter has previously voted or registered to vote and, if so, the approximate year in which he last voted or registered and his name and address at the time;


His date of birth;


A space for the applicant to indicate whether or not he is a citizen of the United States;


The gender of the voter (optional);


The telephone number of the applicant (optional);


Whether the voter was challenged;


A space for the applicant to indicate his choice of party enrollment, with a clear alternative provided for the applicant to decline to affiliate with any party.


On the face of each registration record there also shall be spaces appropriately entitled, for entering information about the cancellation of registration, the date of such cancellation and the reason therefor, and the signature of the two members or employees of the board, representing different political parties by whom the cancellation was recorded;


A space for “remarks” regarding other facts required by this chapter to be recorded or appropriate to identify the voter;


A space for pre-registering applicants to respond to the following question: “Are you at least 16 years of age and understand that you must be 18 years of age on or before election day to vote, and that until you will be eighteen years of age at the time of such election your registration will be marked ’pending’ and you will be unable to cast a ballot in any election?”.


On each registration poll record shall be spaces appropriately entitled and arranged for the voting record and signature of each voter. Each line above the last shall be reserved for the entries for each election at which the voter casts his vote. Such arrangement shall allow for the entry of the following information with reference to each election at which the registrant shall vote; the year, month and day of the election; the voter’s number recorded on the public-counter, and the designation of the particular machine used if there be more than one in the district, if voting machines are used; the number on the ballot delivered and voted by the voter, if paper ballots are used; the signature of the voter; and the signatures or initials of the election inspectors by whom the voter is admitted to vote. On the last line at the bottom shall be a space for the voter’s signature to be made at the time of registration.


On a different part of the registration poll record shall be spaces for recording the enrollment of the voter, changes in such enrollment, including, in each case, the number of the enrollment blank used, the date, the name of the party, appropriate remarks; and the initials of the board members who make any entry:


The state board of elections shall prescribe the form of the record required by this section which may include any additional information it shall deem necessary. The state board may provide that the form of application for registration by mail may be used in lieu of the form prescribed by this section.

Source: Section 5-500 — Registration records; form and content, https://www.­nysenate.­gov/legislation/laws/ELN/5-500 (updated Nov. 27, 2020; accessed Nov. 25, 2023).

Nov. 25, 2023

Last modified:
Nov. 27, 2020

§ 5-500’s source at nysenate​.gov

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