Code Section
Virginia > Title 24.2 Elections > Voter Registration Article 3: Locations and Times for Registration

§ 24.2-416 Closing registration records before elections

Overview of Statute

This section provides for the closing of registration records before elections.


In any county, city, or town in which an election is being held, the registration records shall be closed for the purpose of registering voters on the election day and during the period in advance of the election as provided in this section. The registration records shall be closed during the twenty-eight days before a primary or general election. Beginning January 1, 2010, the registration records shall be closed during the 21 days before a primary or general election. If the registration records have not been closed previously for a primary or general election, they shall be closed during the six days before a special election called by the Governor, Speaker of the House of Delegates, or President pro tempore of the Senate, or pursuant to rule or resolution of either house of the General Assembly and during the thirteen days before any other special election.

Code 1950, §§ 24-82, 24-83.1; 1962, c. 536; 1970, c. 462, § 24.1-50; 1973, c. 30; 1975, c. 515; 1993, c. 641; 2008, c. 424.

Annotation: 10/18/2016 2:16 pm

The last day to register to vote in the November 2016 general election was Oct. 17th. However, on the 17th, Virginia’s online voter registration system crashed, meaning some Virginians trying to register were unsuccessful. The system problem now has some calling for the deadline to be extended. For further reading, see

Annotation: 10/23/2016 9:51 pm

On Oct. 18, 2016, New Virginia Majority Education Fund et al. sued the Virginia Dept. of Elections, seeking “to prevent the disenfranchisement of eligible prospective voters in Virginia, whose right to vote has been impeded due to technological problems with and the systemic breakdown of Virginia’s online voter registration website, and the refusal of Defendants to remedy the situation.” For further reading, see Edgardo Cortes, commissioner of the VA Dept. of Elections, responded that there was no statutory provision allowing for extending the voter registration deadline. But a federal judge decided to extend the deadline on Oct. 20. The deadline was extended to Oct. 21st at 11:59 PM. The judge rejected the parties’ suggestion that it be extended to Oct. 24, saying that they were asking for too much time. For more, see Specifically, the judge ordered that Defendants (1) reopen and extend the deadline and (2) take all action necessary to provide notice to the public of the reopening and extension.

Definition [General election]

An election held in the Commonwealth on the Tuesday after the first Monday in November or on the first Tuesday in May for the purpose of filling offices regularly scheduled by law to be filled at those times.

See § 24.2-101.

Definition [Special election]

Any election that is held pursuant to law to fill a vacancy in office or to hold a referendum.

See § 24.2-101.

Definition [Registration records]

All official records concerning the registration of qualified voters and shall include all records, lists, applications, and files, whether maintained in books, on cards, on automated data bases, or by any other legally permitted record-keeping method.

See § 24.2-101.

Definition [Primary]

An election held for the purpose of selecting a candidate to be the nominee of a political party for election to office.

See § 24.2-101.

Definition [Election]

A general, primary, or special election.

See § 24.2-101.

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