Serving as an Election Judge is a great service to your community and essential to our democracy. Election Judges are officials that staff local polling places, administer election procedures, and ensure that the rights of voters are protected on Election Day.
Duties of an Election Judge
- Set up the polling place
- Operate voting equipment
- Direct voters to the correct line
- Register individuals to vote
- Ensure all qualified voters are permitted to vote
- Demonstrate how to vote
- Distribute ballots to voters
- Assist voters
- Close down polling place following voting
- Determine results after polls close
- Certify the polling place results
Required Qualifications to be an Election Judge
- You must be eligible to vote in Minnesota
- You must be able to read, write and speak English
- You cannot be a spouse, parent, child, or sibling of any election judge serving in the same precinct, unless serving on separate shifts.
- You cannot be a candidate or the spouse, parent child, stepchild or sibling of a candidate on the ballot in that precinct
Desired Qualifications of an Election Judge
- Ability to communicate clearly with voters
- Comfortable with assisting and serving a diverse population
- Ability to remain impartial and not exert influence over voters
- Physical and emotional stamina
- Attention to detail
- General math skills
Becoming an Election Judge
- Complete the election judge sign-up form(available from the MN Secretary of State) and mail to your municipal clerk
- Attend your political party’s precinct caucus and request to be on a list of volunteers to be an election judge.
All appointments are made by the township or city councils at least 25 days before an election. If you are appointed, you must attend training conducted by your municipal clerk or county auditor.
Time off from employment to Service
You may take time off from work to be an election judge.
- You must give your employer at least 20 days written notice, and you must attach the hour/pay rate form you will receive from the township board or city council that appoints you.
- Your employer may reduce your salary/wages by that amount you are paid as an election judge during the time you are away from work.
- Your employer may restrict the number of its employees serving as election judges to no more than 20 percent at a single work site.