§ 163-82.7. Verification of qualifications and address of applicant; denial or approval of application.
Overview of Statute
Provides for the verification procedure and instruction on procedural posture upon receipt of submitted application.
(a) Tentative Determination of Qualification.–When a county board of elections receives an application for registration submitted pursuant to G.S. 163-82.6, the board either:
(1) Shall make a determination that the applicant is not qualified to vote at the address given, or
(2) Shall make a tentative determination that the applicant is qualified to vote at the address given, subject to the mail verification notice procedure outlined in subsection (c) of this section
within a reasonable time after receiving the application.
(b) Denial of Registration.–If the county board of elections makes a determination pursuant to subsection (a) of this section that the applicant is not qualified to vote at the address given, the board shall send, by certified mail, a notice of denial of registration. The notice of denial shall contain the date on which registration was denied, and shall be mailed within two business days after denial. The notice of denial shall inform the applicant of alternatives that the applicant may pursue to exercise the franchise. If the applicant disagrees with the denial, the applicant may appeal the decision under G.S. 163-82.18.
(c) Verification of Address by Mail.–If the county board of elections tentatively determines that the applicant is qualified to vote at the address given, then the county board shall send a notice to the applicant, by nonforwardable mail, at the address the applicant provides on the application form. The notice shall state that the county will register the applicant to vote if the Postal Service does not return the notice as undeliverable to the county board. The notice shall also inform the applicant of the precinct and voting place to which the applicant will be assigned if registered.
(d) Approval of Application.–If the Postal Service does not return the notice as undeliverable, the county board shall register the applicant to vote.
(e) Second Notice if First Notice Is Returned as Undeliverable.–If the Postal Service returns the notice as undeliverable, the county board shall send a second notice by nonforwardable mail to the same address to which the first was sent. If the second notice is not returned as undeliverable, the county board shall register the applicant to vote.
(f) Denial of Application Based on Lack of Verification of Address.–If the Postal Service returns as undeliverable the notice sent by nonforwardable mail pursuant to subsection (e) of this section, the county board shall deny the application. The county board need not try to notify the applicant further.
(g) Voting When Verification Process Is Incomplete.–In cases where an election occurs before the process of verification outlined in this section has had time to be completed, the county board of elections shall be guided by the following rules:
(1) If the county board has made a tentative determination that an applicant is qualified to vote under subsection (a) of this section, then that person shall not be denied the right to vote in person in an election unless the Postal Service has returned as undeliverable two notices to the applicant: one mailed pursuant to subsection (c) of this section and one mailed pursuant to subsection (e) of this section. This subdivision does not preclude a challenge to the voter’s qualifications under Article 8 of this Chapter.
(2) If the Postal Service has returned as undeliverable a notice sent within 25 days before the election to the applicant under subsection (c) of this section, then the applicant may vote only in person in that first election and may not vote by absentee ballot except in person under G.S. 163-227.2, 163-227.5, and 163-227.6. The county board of elections shall establish a procedure at the voting site for:
a. Obtaining the correct address of any person described in this subdivision who appears to vote in person; and
b. Assuring that the person votes in the proper place and in the proper contests.
If a notice mailed under subsection (c) or subsection (e) of this section is returned as undeliverable after a person has already voted by absentee ballot, then that person’s ballot may be challenged in accordance with G.S. 163-89.
(3) If a notice sent pursuant to subsection (c) or (e) of this section is returned by the Postal Service as undeliverable after a person has already voted in an election, then the county board shall treat the person as a registered voter but shall send a confirmation mailing pursuant to G.S. 163-82.14(d)(2) and remove or retain the person on the registration records in accordance with that subdivision.
(1991 (Reg. Sess., 1992), c. 1044, s. 18(a); 1993, c. 74, s. 1; 1993 (Reg. Sess., 1994), c. 762, s. 2; 1999-455, s. 16; 2017-6, s. 3; S.L. 2018-146, s. 3.1(a), (b).)
1. Definition for Voting place
“Voting place” means the building or area of the building that contains the voting enclosure.
2. Definition for day
The term “day” means calendar day.
3. Definition for made
A contribution is “made” during regular session if the check or other instrument is dated during the session, or if the check or other instrument is delivered to the limited contributee during session, or if the limited contributor pledges during the session to deliver the check or other instrument at a later time.
4. Definition for board
The term “board” means the State Board with respect to all candidates for State, legislative, and judicial offices and the county board of elections with respect to all candidates for county and municipal offices. The term means the State Board with respect to all statewide referenda and the county board of elections conducting all local referenda.
5. Definition for Board
Board. – Any State board, commission, council, committee, task force,
authority, or similar public body, however denominated, created by statute or
executive order, as determined and designated by the State Board, except for
those public bodies that have only advisory authority.
6. Definition for State
“State” means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
7. Definition for person
The term “person” means any business entity, corporation, insurance company, labor union, or professional association.
8. Definition for Ballot
(Effective until January 1, 2018 or September 1, 2019 – see note) “Ballot” means an instrument on which a voter indicates that voter’s choice for a ballot item so that it may be recorded as a vote for or against a certain candidate or referendum proposal. The term “ballot” may include a paper ballot to be counted by hand, a paper ballot to be counted on an electronic
scanner, the face of a lever voting machine, the image on a direct record electronic unit, or a ballot used on any other voting system.
(Effective January 1, 2018 or September 1, 2019 – see note) “Ballot” means an instrument on which a voter indicates that voter’s choice for a ballot item so that it may be recorded as a vote for or against a certain candidate or referendum proposal, and is evidenced by an individual paper document that bears marks made by the voter by hand or through electronic
means, whether preprinted or printed in the voting enclosure.
9. Definition for election
The term “election” means any general or special election, a first or second primary, a run-off election, or an election to fill a vacancy. The term “election” shall not include any local or statewide referendum.
10. Definition for Election
“Election” means the event in which voters cast votes in ballot items concerning proposals or candidates for office in this State or the United States. The term includes primaries, general elections, referenda, and special elections.
11. Definition for Business
Business. – Any of the following organized for profit:
b. Business trust.
e. Joint venture.
i. Vested trust.
j. Every other business interest, including ownership or use of land for
North Carolina Cases
Case Name: In re Reid
Citation: 26 S.E. 337
Case Summary: Pursuant to Acts 1895 c. 159, registrars are permitted to ask an elector as to their age, residence, and the name by which he is commonly known, as well as the township and county from where he removed. Additionally, the Constitution Article 6 § 1 permits registrars to ask if an elector resided in the state 12 months preceding the election and 90 days in the county in which he offers to vote. However, a registrar cannot inquire about convictions, such convictions not being a disqualification if the person has been restored to the rights of citizenship.
Case Name: State ex rel. Harris v. Scarborough
Citation: 14 S.E. 737
Case PDF: State ex rel. Harris v. Scarborough
Case Summary: The onus is passed to the voter to make registration answers as specific as required for registration purposes, and the register need only ask the questions required by law. In other words, this challenge is sufficient only if the did, or offered to do, all that the law required and his failure to be registered was the fault of the registration officer. Without evidence to the contrary, it shall be presumed the registration officer had performed his duty. However, if a voter offers to comply with reasonable regulation governing his registration, and is prevented from compliance by the wrongful act of a registrar, his vote should be counted. If voters live near an indefinite line between two townships and registered in the township which they did not reside but showed they were taxed, sent their children to school, and previously voted in such township, then their votes shall be counted without evidence to sustain a finding of bad faith. Pursuant to Const. Art. 6, §§ 1, 2, the legislature had the power to enact laws which reasonably required that "no registration shall be valid unless it specifies, as near as may be, the age, occupation, place of birth, place of residence of the elector, as well as the township or county from whence the elector has removed, in event of removal, and the full name by which the voter is known" (Laws 1889, c. 287, § 3).