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Election

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Elections1

State Voting Laws Regarding Mental Illness

In most states, persons undergoing court-ordered evaluation or receiving mental health treatment in a facility may not be denied the right to vote solely due to status as a patient.

STATE

VOTING RIGHTS

Alabama

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless finding is reversed.

In a limited guardianship, a person retains the right to vote unless delegated to the guardian by the court.

Alaska

A person judged to be of "unsound mind" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

Guardianship is not a determination of legal incompetence; a person retains the right to vote unless specifically limited or granted to the guardian by the court.

Arizona

A person judged "incapacitated" or "insane" by a court is disqualified from voting or registering to vote.

Arkansas

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting.

Guardianship is not a determination of legal incompetence; a person retains the right to vote unless specifically limited or granted to the guardian by the court.

If a guardian was appointed prior to Oct. 1, 2001, then the guardian must obtain a court-order to prohibit voting. If a guardian was appointed on or after Oct. 1, 2001, then the guardian must obtain a court-order to approve voting.

California

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting.

A person under conservatorship must be evaluated by the court for voting rights determination.

Colorado

A person's right to vote is retained while confined in a state hospital.

Mental health treatment facilities or agencies shall assist patients in obtaining voter registration forms, applications for absentee ballots, and absentee ballots and to comply with any other prerequisites for voting.

Connecticut

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting.

The guardian or conservator of a person may file a petition to determine the person's competency to vote.

Delaware

A person judged "mentally incompetent" or "incapacitated" by a court is disqualified from voting.

District of Columbia

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

Incapacitation is not a determination of legal incompetence; a person retains the right to vote unless under guardianship.

Florida

A person judged "mentally incompetent" or "incapacitated" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless finding is reversed or civil rights are restored.

A person under guardianship must be evaluated for voting rights determination.

The department shall establish rules to enable patients to obtain voter registration forms, applications for absentee ballots, and absentee ballots.

Georgia

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

Guardianship is not a determination of the right to vote.

Facility administrators shall permit and reasonably assist patients in obtaining voter registration forms, applications for absentee ballots, and absentee ballots.

Hawaii

A person judged "mentally incompetent" or "incapacitated" by a court is disqualified from voting, provided the incapacitation is to the extent that the person lacks sufficient understanding or capacity to make or communicate responsible decisions concerning voting.

Idaho

No statute or provision disqualifying a person with mental illness from voting.

A mental health facility cannot deny right to vote unless right limited by prior court order.

Illinois

No statute or provision disqualifying a person with mental illness from voting.

Indiana

No statute or provision disqualifying a person with mental illness from voting.

Iowa

A person judged to be "insane"," an "idiot" or "incompetent to vote" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

A person under guardianship must be evaluated by the court for voting rights determination.

Kansas

Legislature may exclude a person from voting because of mental illness.*

*subject to change in November 2010 with constitutional amendment.

Kentucky

A person judged to be "insane" or an "idiot" by a court is disqualified from voting.

A person declared incompetent but not declared ""insane"" retains the right to vote.

A person under guardianship or conservatorship retains the right to vote unless court specifically removes the right to vote.

Louisiana

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

Maine

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless finding is reversed.

Maryland

A person under guardianship for mental disability is disqualified from voting.

Massachusetts

A person who is under guardianship and determined to be incompetent is disqualified from voting.

Michigan

Legislature may exclude a person from voting based on "mental incompetence."

No statute or provision disqualifying a person with mental illness from voting.

Minnesota

A person judged "insane" or "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting.

Person under guardianship is disqualified from voting. Conflicting statute: A person under guardianship retains the right to vote unless judged incompetent or otherwise ordered by the court.

Mississippi

A person judged "insane" or an "idiot" by a court is disqualified from voting.

Missouri

A person judged "mentally incompetent" or "incapacitated" by a court is disqualified from voting.

A person under guardianship for mental disability or involuntarily confined in an institution is disqualified from voting.

Montana

A person judged to be of "unsound mind" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

Nebraska

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed and civil rights are restored.

Guardianship is not a determination of legal incompetence.

Nevada

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed. Medical director shall evaluate every six months to determine if sufficient cause to remain unable to vote.

New Hampshire

No statute or provision disqualifying a person with mental illness from voting.

New Jersey

A person judged incapable of understanding the act of voting by a court is disqualified from voting.

New Mexico

A person judged an "idiot" or "insane" by a court is disqualified from voting.
A person under a guardianship or limited guardianship retains the right to vote unless expressly limited or granted to the guardian by the court.

New York

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

North Carolina

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

North Dakota

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

A person under a guardianship may not lose the right to vote, except upon specific findings of the court.

Unless specifically restricted in writing every 14 days by a patient's treating physician, all patients in treatment retain their right to vote.

Ohio

A person judged an "idiot," an "insane" person, or "mentally incompetent" for the purpose of voting by a court is disqualified from voting.

Oklahoma

A person judged "incapacitated" or "partially incapacitated" and right to vote is restricted by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

Court shall make a specific determination of the voting capacity of a person under guardianship or conservatorship.

Oregon

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

Pennsylvania

No statute or provision disqualifying a person with mental illness from voting.

Rhode Island

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting.

South Carolina

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting.

South Dakota

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting.

Guardianship or conservatorship is not a determination of legal incompetence; a person retains the right to vote unless specifically granted to the guardian or conservator by the court.

Tennessee

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

A person under a conservatorship may lose the right to vote if included in petition for appointment of conservator.

Texas

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting.

Utah

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed or the right is restored. Qualification shall be reviewed every 30 days.

Vermont

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

Virginia

A person judged "mentally incompetent" or "incapacitated" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed.

Washington

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting or registering to vote.

A person under guardianship shall not lose the right to vote, unless the court determines that the person is incompetent to vote.

West Virginia

A person judged of "unsound mind" or "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting or registering to vote, unless the finding is reversed.

Wisconsin

A person under guardianship or judged "mentally incompetent" or "partially incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed or court expressly determines that the person is competent to vote.

A person under limited guardianship must be evaluated by the court for voting rights determination.

Wyoming

A person judged "mentally incompetent" by a court is disqualified from voting, unless the finding is reversed or civil rights have been restored.

 

 
 

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