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Preserve Democracy in America - Be an Election Judge

Become an Election Judge l Current Judge Information

Serve as an Election Judge
Election judges are essential to our democracy.  They are officials that staff local polling places, administer election procedures, and ensure that the rights of voters are protected on Election Day. Serving as an election judge provides an opportunity to learn about the elections process and is a great service to our community.

Election judges may serve on primary, general Election Day, or both.  Some election judges are assigned to work in the Elections Office before or after the elections.  There are 105 polling locations in St. Paul, 10 in Roseville, 4 each in Arden Hills, Mounds View, Vadnais Heights and White Bear Township, two each in Falcon Heights and North Oaks, and one in Gem Lake.  Polling places are typically located in schools, libraries, recreation centers, or churches.

Duties of an Election Judge

  • Check in registered voters
  • Register new voters
  • Demonstrate how to use voting equipment
  • Assist elderly and disabled voters, if requested
  • Open and close the polling place
  • Required Qualifications to be an Election Judge

    • You must be at least 18 years of age
    • You must be a citizen of the United States
    • You must be able to read, write and speak English
    • You must be eligible to vote in Minnesota
    • You cannot serve at an election in the same district where your spouse, parent, child or sibling is a candidate
    • You cannot serve in the same precinct with your spouse, parent, child or sibling

    Student Eligibility

    • High school students at least 16-years-old may serve as election judges
    • College students are encouraged to serve as election judges on or near campus

    Desired Qualifications

    • Ability to communicate clearly with voters
    • Comfortable with assisting and serving a diverse population
    • Ability to remain impartial and not exert influence over voters
    • Attention to detail

    Required Training
    Completion of a two-hour long training class every two years. Training sessions cover basic provisions of the Minnesota election law, Ramsey County election procedures, operation of voting systems, and related topics. Classes are conducted on weekday evenings, or online if you are a returning election judge.

    Days and Hours of Work
    Election judges work either the primary or the general election, or both. Judges are asked to work from 6:00 a.m. to approximately 9:00 p.m., or whenever closing activities are finished. Half day shifts may be available.

    Compensation for Time
    You can choose to volunteer your time or be compensated. Saint Paul election judges are compensated at a rate of $9.50 - $13.50 per hour, depending on the duties performed.

    Time Off From Employment to Serve
    Minnesota law allows you to take time off from work without loss of wages to serve as an election judge if you give your employer 20 days prior written notice.
    Letter to Employers (pdf)

    Election Judge Assignments
    Assignments are made based on several factors:

  • Party Balance – State law requires a balance among the election judges from different major political parties in each polling place.
  • Number of Vacancies – The number of vacancies in each precinct varies anywhere from 4 to 12 judges based primarily on the number of registered voters in the precinct.
  • Working Area – The Elections office tries to assign election judges as close to their home precinct as possible.
  • Assignment letters for each election are sent by electronic or surface mail 30 days prior to the election.

    Become an Election Judge
    Complete the following forms and return them to:

    Ramsey County Elections
    90 West Plato Boulevard, Suite 160
    PO Box 64098
    Saint Paul, MN 55164-0098

    Fax: 651-266-2177

    If you prefer to have an application mailed to you, please call 651-266-2171.

    To volunteer your time - If you wish to volunteer your time, please fill out this form:
    Election Judge Volunteer Application (pdf)

    To be paid for your time - If you wish to be paid for your time, please fill out the first three pages of this form, and include a copy of an acceptable identification document (listed on the fourth page):
    Election Judge Paid Application (pdf)

    Student Election Judge
     - High school students can be election judges and be paid: 
    Student Election Judge Application (pdf)
    Student Paid Application (pdf)

    If you are unable to print these documents, email or call 651-266-2171.