Voters may be designated as confidential once they are registered through the standard Voter Registration form (EL-131). Once the voter is registered through the standard process, they must then submit a completed Request for Confidentiality form (EL-146) along with an acceptable document supporting their need for confidentiality.
Clerks will update or register the voters as confidential in the voter registration system to generate the confidential voter number. Clerks can contact the WEC who will provide clerks with the confidential voter card form (EL-148) where the number will be added by the clerk, who will then issue it to the voter. Reliers should work with their provider to update the voter to confidential voter status in the voter registration system.
If you have questions about confidential voters, please contact the WEC HelpDesk.
Voters who are victims of domestic abuse, sexual assault or stalking may have the option for a confidential listing in the poll book. Eligible individuals include:
- An individual who has been granted a protective order that is in effect related to either domestic abuse or harassment.
- An individual who is a victim of domestic abuse, sexual assault, or stalking where a person has been charged with or convicted of such an offense and where the individual reasonably continues to be threatened by that person.
- An individual who resides in a shelter.
- An individual who has received services from a domestic abuse or sexual assault victim services provider within the last 24 months.
- An individual who is a participant in the Safe at Home program.
- A copy of a protective order that is still in effect.
- A completed Affidavit of Sheriff, Chief of Police, or District Attorney (EL-147), dated within 30 days of the date of the request.
- A statement signed by the operator or an authorized agent of the operator of a shelter that is dated within 30 days of the date of the request, which indicates that the operator operates the shelter and that the individual making the request resides in the shelter.
- A statement signed by an authorized representative of a domestic abuse victim service provider or a sexual assault victim service provider that is dated within 30 days of the date of the request.
- Confirmation from the Wisconsin Department of Justice that the requester is a participant in the Safe at Home address confidentiality program.
The voter's information will not appear in most WisVote search results or in Badger Voter's data requests. The voter will also not appear on MyVote search results, which restricts their ability to complete absentee requests online, however they may be emailed directly to the clerk. Confidential voter's do not need to supply a photo ID to vote absentee.
Confidential voters will print in a separate section of the poll book without the voter's address. Confidential voters are not required to show photo ID or state their address aloud to vote at the polling place, and will instead provide their confidential voter ID number that must match the confidential voter ID number printed on the poll book in place of their address.
Yes, confidential voter status expires under the following conditions:
- When the protective order expires. Wis. Stat. § 6.47(4)(a).
- When the confidential elector no longer resides in a shelter. Wis. Stat. § 6.47(4)(a).
- When updated information is received from a sheriff, chief of police, or district attorney that indicates the person is no longer qualified for a confidential listing. Wis. Stat. § 6.47(5)(a)1.
- 24 months have passed since the creation/renewal of the confidential listing. Wis. Stat. § 6.47(4)(a).
- The voter changes their name or address. Wis. Stat. § 6.47(5)(a) 2, 3.
When a confidential listing expires, the clerk shall change the registration of the confidential elector to inactive unless the confidential elector files a new request for a confidential listing or applies and qualifies for a nonconfidential voter registration. Wis. Stat. § 6.47(6).
Inactive confidential voter registrations must be kept confidential until destroyed under Wis. Stat. § 7.23(1)(c).
If the municipal clerk has notice that a confidential listing is scheduled to expire (end of the 24-month period), the clerk shall provide 30 days’ notice to the confidential elector of the scheduled expiration of the listing. Wis. Stat. § 6.47(7)(a).