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Frequently Asked Questions:

What are the requirements to be eligible to vote in Florida?

1. Be a citizen of the United States of America.

2. Be a legal resident of Florida.

3. Be a legal resident of the county in which you seek to be registered.

4. Be at least 16 years old to preregister or at least 18 years old to register and vote.

5. Not be a person who has been adjudicated mentally incapacitated with respect to voting in Florida or any other state without having the right to vote restored; and,

6. Not be a person convicted of a felony without having your right to vote restored.

It is a 3rd degree felony to submit false information regarding voting eligibility.

What is the purpose of the 8th Circuit Voting Rights Restoration Verification Program (V8TH)?

In 2018, Florida passed Amendment 4 to the Florida Constitution. This Amendment provides that the right of a person who has been convicted of a felony(ies), (other than a sexual crime or a murder) is automatically restored upon completion of that person’s sentence. The V8TH provides a service to eligible persons who are unsure whether he or she has completed his or her sentence for the purpose of restoration of his or her voting rights.

Can anyone use the V8TH?

No. To use the V8TH you must meet the following criteria:

1. You must have a prior felony conviction. It doesn’t matter where the conviction occurred.

2. You must reside in the 8th Judicial Circuit of Florida. (Alachua, Baker, Bradford, Gilchrist, Levy and Union Counties). Proof of residency is required.

3. You must complete the V8TH Application and be accepted into the program.

How do I apply?

You can download the form here (V8th Application).

1. Print it out

2. Fill in the blanks

3. Sign it and have your signature notarized

4. Either

a. Bring it in to our office or

b. Mail the application to:

Office of the State Attorney
ATTN: VRRVP Department
120 W. University Ave
Gainesville, FL 32601

Where can I get a signature notarized?

You can get a signature notarized by signing in the presence of a notary. Notaries can be found in a variety of places including banks, shipping stores, and State buildings. All of our office locations have at least one notary as well.

Why can’t I apply online?

In order to properly and accurately determine your voting eligibility, we need you to submit sensitive, personal information such as your Social Security Number or ID or Driver’s License numbers. Sending this information over the internet comes with inherent risks. In order to best protect your information, we are not accepting applications online.

What happens if my application to the V8TH is accepted?

If you are accepted into the program, the 8th Circuit State Attorney’s Office will make a good faith effort to confirm whether you are eligible to vote. Once completed, you will be issued a letter stating our findings regarding your eligibility to vote. That letter will state that, as of the date of issuance, that you are eligible to vote in the Eighth Judicial Circuit, ineligible to vote, or your status cannot be determined with the resources available to this office. An explanation of our findings will not be provided. If we determine that you are not eligible, we may refer you to one of our community partners who may be able to assist you in regaining your right to vote.

If I am ineligible to vote, will you explain why?

No, there are two reasons for this. First, we utilize databases that are regulated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and administer by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. In order to maintain our access to these databases, we cannot disclose the content of the databases to anyone, except when authorized by the Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure or ordered to do so by a Judge. Second, once we determine that any portion of any sentence is incomplete, we stop and issue a letter of ineligibility. As such, it is unlikely that we are aware of every matter that makes you ineligible. Therefore, any information that we might have would likely be incomplete.

Why would I want to utilize this program?

Voting is an import right and a civic duty. However, uncertainty and the risk of committing a criminal offense may dissuade you from voting even though you may be legally entitled to do so. You may find it difficult to determine if your sentence(s) is (are) complete. When we determine that you have completed your sentence, we will issue you a letter stating that you are eligible to vote. If your legal status remains unchanged from the date of our issuing that letter, when you register and vote in the Eighth Judicial Circuit, you are assured that you will not face State criminal prosecution for doing so.

What if I move? Is this letter good outside of the Eighth Judicial Circuit?

Our letter only protects you from prosecution within the Eighth Judicial Circuit. No Federal prosecutor or other State prosecutor is bound by our determination. We hope that other prosecutors would take our findings into account, but no other prosecutors office is prevented from prosecuting you because of our letter.

If you determine that I am ineligible to vote, what if I disagree? Can I appeal?

Pursuant to s. 98.075, the Supervisor of Elections is charged with verifying and making a final determination regarding whether the person who registers to vote is eligible under s. 4, Art. VI of the State. Our determination is binding on us, and only binding on us, not the Supervisor of Elections or the Courts. There is no process to appeal our determination that you are ineligible to vote. However, our determination that you are ineligible is not legally binding on you. Should you choose to register and / or vote after we determine that you are ineligible, you could be charged with a crime. Your eligibility or ineligibility can still be litigated in Criminal Court. Only a Judge or Jury can legally decide if you violated the law by registering to vote or voting.

What Does the Florida Constitution say about voting by convicted felons?

The actual text is: Article VI, Section 4. Disqualifications.— (a) No person convicted of a felony, or adjudicated in this or any other state to be mentally incompetent, shall be qualified to vote or hold office until restoration of civil rights or removal of disability. Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, any disqualification from voting arising from a felony conviction shall terminate and voting rights shall be restored upon completion of all terms of sentence including parole or probation. (b) No person convicted of murder or a felony sexual offense shall be qualified to vote until restoration of civil rights.

What offenses are included as a murder or felony sexual offense?

“Felony sexual offense” means any of the following:

 1. Any felony offense that serves as a predicate to registration as a sexual offender in accordance with s. 943.0435;

Section 491.0112;

Section 784.049(3)(b);

Section 794.08;

Section 796.08;

Section 800.101;

Section 826.04;

Section 847.012;

Section 872.06(2);

Section 944.35(3)(b)2.;

Section 951.221(1); or

 Any similar offense committed in another jurisdiction which would be an offense listed in this paragraph if it had been committed in violation of the laws of this state.

“Murder” means either of the following:

 A violation of any of the following sections which results in the actual killing of a human being:

a. Section 775.33(4);

b. Section 782.04(1), (2), or (3);

c. Section 782.09;

Any similar offense committed in another jurisdiction which would be an offense listed in this paragraph if it had been committed in violation of the laws of this state.

What does it mean to have completed a sentence?

To have completed a sentence, the person must have completed all the following:
Florida Statute §98.0751(2) states: For purposes of this section, the term: (a) “Completion of all terms of sentence” means any portion of a sentence that is contained in the four corners of the sentencing document, including, but not limited to:

1. Release from any term of imprisonment ordered by the court as a part of the sentence;

2. Termination from any term of probation or community control ordered by the court as a part of the sentence;

3. Fulfillment of any term ordered by the court as a part of the sentence;

4. Termination from any term of any supervision, which is monitored by the Florida Commission on Offender Review, including, but not limited to, parole; and

5.a. Full payment of restitution ordered to a victim by the court as a part of the sentence. A victim includes, but is not limited to, a person or persons, the estate or estates thereof, an entity, the state, or the Federal Government.

  b. Full payment of fines or fees ordered by the court as a part of the sentence or that are ordered by the court as a condition of any form of supervision, including, but not limited to, probation, community control, or parole.

  c. The financial obligations required under sub-subparagraph a. or sub-subparagraph b. include only the amount specifically ordered by the court as part of the sentence and do not include any fines, fees, or costs that accrue after the date the obligation is ordered as a part of the sentence.

  d. For the limited purpose of addressing a plea for relief pursuant to sub-subparagraph e. and notwithstanding any other statute, rule, or provision of law, a court may not be prohibited from modifying the financial obligations of an original sentence required under sub-subparagraph a. or sub-subparagraph b. Such modification shall not infringe on a defendant’s or a victim’s rights provided in the United States Constitution or the State Constitution.

   e. Financial obligations required under sub-subparagraph a. or sub-subparagraph b. are considered completed in the following manner or in any combination thereof:

      (I) Actual payment of the obligation in full.

    (II) Upon the payee’s approval, either through appearance in open court or through the production of a notarized consent by the payee, the termination by the court of any financial obligation to a payee, including, but not limited to, a victim, or the court.

    (III) Completion of all community service hours, if the court, unless otherwise prohibited by law or the State Constitution, converts the financial obligation to community service.

Is there a way to get my voting rights back if I have not completed my sentence?

Yes, you can apply to the State Clemency Board for restoration of your voting rights:

The Office of Executive Clemency Florida Commission on Offender Review
4070 Esplanade Way
Tallahassee, FL 32399-2450

What if I was convicted in a State other than Florida?

A felony conviction in another state makes a person ineligible to vote in Florida only if the conviction would make the person ineligible to vote in the state where the person was convicted. An offense on which a person was not adjudicated guilty does not make a person ineligible to vote. A misdemeanor conviction does not make a person ineligible to vote.

Where can I register to vote?

There are several places to register to vote, including:

1. Register To Vote Florida

2. Supervisor of Elections Office


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