The Dos and Don'ts of Election Law
The federal law concerning voter-registration drives and get-out-the-vote efforts can be summarized as follows:
Your company must --
- provide registration information to all employees regardless of their individual political opinions; and
- give employees written notice of the non-partisan nature of the drive.
Your company must not --
- endorse, support or oppose any candidate or political party in conjunction with a voter-registration drive;
- tell employees for whom to cast their vote in conjunction with a voter-registration drive;
- coordinate voter-registration drives with any candidate or political party; or
- use phone banks to encourage registrations and voting for any particular candidate or party.
Your company may --
- encourage every member of your staff to register to vote. This applies equally to executives, managers and professionals, as well as non-exempt staff (line-workers, drivers, etc.);
- identify your company as the sponsor of your voter-registration drive. This includes using your business logo and stationary;
- reprint and distribute registration forms if state and local law permits. This can include giving money to state and local election officials to help cover the cost of printing official forms; and
- pay for ads (posters, billboards, broadcasting, print or direct mail) urging employees to register and to vote.
State, county and city election laws vary. Check with your state's election board if you have any questions.