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virginia > Title 24.2 Elections > Voter Registration

§ 24.2-429 Maintenance of accurate registration records by general registrar; notice and hearing before cancellation

Overview of Statute

This section gives a person alleged to be improperly registered the right to a hearing at which the registrar determines if the registered voter is qualified to vote in the county or city. If not, the registrar shall cancel the voter’s registration.

Statute

Whenever a registered voter is alleged to be improperly registered, except for reason of removal of residence from the precinct, either by the general registrar or by any three qualified voters of the county or city who make such an allegation to the general registrar, the registrar shall post at the courthouse or publish in a newspaper of general circulation in his county or city the name of the registered voter on a list of persons whose registrations are to be cancelled by the general registrar. The list shall be certified by the registrar and delivered or sent by mail to the county or city chairman of each political party. If sent by mail, the general registrar shall obtain a certificate of mailing. In addition to the posted or published list, the general registrar shall send a notice by mail to the last known address of each registered voter on the list, stating the reasons provided by law for the cancellation, the facts on which the cancellation is based, and when the registrar, at his office during regular office hours, will hear testimony produced for or against the right of persons named in the notice to be retained on the registration records. The hearings shall be held not less than ten days after the mailing of the notice, and in no event shall be within sixty days of the general election in November or within thirty days of any other election in the county or city.

At the hearing, the registrar shall hear the testimony produced and shall determine if the registered voter named in the notice is qualified to vote in the county or city. If the person is no longer qualified to vote, the registrar shall cancel the voter’s registration. Nothing contained in this section shall prevent the registered voter from applying to the general registrar for a transfer to his proper jurisdiction, provided the registration records are not closed as provided by law. The general registrar may continue the hearing for a period of not more than thirty days in order to complete his examination. If the registered voter so challenged fails to appear and defend his right to be registered, his registration shall be cancelled by the general registrar.

Code 1950, §§ 24-59, 24-60, 24-60.1, 24-71 through 24-73, 24-90, 24-93, 24-94, 24-97, 24-98, 24-101, 24-107, 24-108, 24-111; 1954, c. 690; 1958, c. 576; 1962, cc. 422, 536; 1964, c. 538; 1970, c. 462, §§ 24.1-46(13), 24.1-60, 24.1-61; 1972, c. 620; 1973, c. 30; 1974, c. 428; 1976, c. 616; 1979, c. 329; 1980, c. 639; 1982, c. 650; 1983, c. 398; 1984, c. 480; 1986, c. 558; 1990, c. 193; 1991, c. 10; 1993, c. 641; 1996, cc. 72, 73.

Annotation: 03/25/2016 11:43 pm

For federal elections, the NVRA provides a 90 day bar. 52 USC 20507(c)(2)(A).

Annotation: 11:40 pm

The NVRA provides specific requirements related to voters who move including a period of two federal elections before registration may be cancelled for inaction.

Definition [Political party]

An organization of citizens of the Commonwealth which, at either of the two preceding statewide general elections, received at least 10 percent of the total vote cast for any statewide office filled in that election. The organization shall have a state central committee and an office of elected state chairman which have been continually in existence for the six months preceding the filing of a nominee for any office.

Definition [Qualified voter]

A person who is entitled to vote pursuant to the Constitution of Virginia and who is (i) 18 years of age on or before the day of the election or qualified pursuant to § 24.2-403 or subsection D of § 24.2-544, (ii) a resident of the Commonwealth and of the precinct in which he offers to vote, and (iii) a registered voter. No person who has been convicted of a felony shall be a qualified voter unless his civil rights have been restored by the Governor or other appropriate authority. No person adjudicated incapacitated shall be a qualified voter unless his capacity has been reestablished as provided by law. Whether a signature should be counted towards satisfying the signature requirement of any petition shall be determined based on the signer of the petition’s qualification to vote. For purposes of determining if a signature on a petition shall be included in the count toward meeting the signature requirements of any petition, “qualified voter” shall include only persons maintained on the Virginia voter registration system (a) with active status and (b) with inactive status who are qualified to vote for the office for which the petition was circulated.

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.

Definition [Registered voter]

Any person who is maintained on the Virginia voter registration system. All registered voters shall be maintained on the Virginia voter registration system with active status unless assigned to inactive status by a general registrar in accordance with Chapter 4 (§ 24.2-400 et seq.). For purposes of applying the precinct size requirements of § 24.2-307, calculating election machine requirements pursuant to Article 3 (§ 24.2-625 et seq.) of Chapter 6, mailing notices of local election district, precinct or polling place changes as required by subdivision 13 of § 24.2-114 and § 24.2-306, and determining the number of signatures required for candidate and voter petitions, “registered voter” shall include only persons maintained on the Virginia voter registration system with active status. For purposes of determining if a signature on a petition shall be included in the count toward meeting the signature requirements of any petition, “registered voter” shall include only persons maintained on the Virginia voter registration system (i) with active status and (ii) on inactive status who are qualified to vote for the office for which the petition was circulated.

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.

Definition [Party]

An organization of citizens of the Commonwealth which, at either of the two preceding statewide general elections, received at least 10 percent of the total vote cast for any statewide office filled in that election. The organization shall have a state central committee and an office of elected state chairman which have been continually in existence for the six months preceding the filing of a nominee for any office.

Definition [Person]

Any individual or corporation, partnership, business, labor organization, membership organization, association, cooperative, or other like entity.

For the purpose of applying the filing and reporting requirements of this chapter, the term “person” shall not include an organization holding tax-exempt status under § 501(c) (3), 501(c) (4), or 501(c) (6) of the United States Internal Revenue Code which, in providing information to voters, does not advocate or endorse the election or defeat of a particular candidate, group of candidates, or the candidates of a particular political party.

Definition [Election]

A general, primary, or special election.

Definition [Precinct]

The territory designated by the governing body of a county, city, or town to be served by one polling place.

Definition [Residence]

For all purposes of qualification to register and vote, means and requires both domicile and a place of abode. To establish domicile, a person must live in a particular locality with the intention to remain. A place of abode is the physical place where a person dwells.

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