August 2016 Update – Broadly speaking, voters will still have to show an approved form of photo identification under SB-14 in order to vote. However, these forms can now be expired up to four years.
In addition, if a voter is not able to obtain, and has a reasonable impediment to obtaining, one of the seven* forms of approved photo ID, the voter may vote by (1) signing a Reasonable Impediment Declaration, and (2) providing one of various forms of supporting documentation.
Supporting documentation can be a certified birth certificate (must be an original), a valid voter registration certificate, a copy or original of one of the following: current utility bill, bank statement, government check, or paycheck, or other government document that shows the name and address of the voter, although government documents including a photo must be original and cannot be copies. If a voter meets these requirements and is otherwise eligible to vote, the voter will be able to cast a regular ballot in the election.
*The seven forms of approved photo ID are:
- Texas driver license issued by the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS)
- Texas Election Identification Certificate issued by DPS
- Texas personal identification card issued by DPS
- Texas license to carry a handgun issued by DPS
- United States military identification card containing the person’s photographs
- United States citizenship certificate containing the person’s photograph
- United States passport
With the exception of the U.S. citizenship certificate, the approved photo ID must be current or have expired no more than four years before being presented for voter qualification at the polling place.
Voters with a disability may continue to apply with the county registrar for a permanent exemption to showing approved photo ID (which now may be expired no more than four years) at the polls. Also, voters who (1) have a consistent religious objections to being photographed or (2) do not present one of the seven forms of approved photo ID because of certain natural disasters as declared by the President of the United States or the Texas Governor, may continue apply for a temporary exemption to showing approved photo ID at the polls.
Voters can learn more by visiting VoteTexas.gov or calling 1-800-252-VOTE.
Voters who live in Dallas County, can visit the Dallas County Elections Department's website or call 214-819-6300.
Voters who live in Tarrant County, can visit the Tarrant County Elections Department's website or call 817-831-8683.