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Officer Qualifications
Steps to Become an Election Officer


If you are having trouble with your application or have questions about becoming an election officer, please contact the Election Officer Team for assistance.


Phone: 703-792-6470 and ask to speak to the “Election Officer Team."



All election officers must:

  • Be a registered voter of the Commonwealth of Virginia.

  • Not hold an elected position, or be the employee of an elected official.

  • Be available to attend all mandatory training.

  • Be available from 5:00am to 9:00pm on Election Day without leaving the polling place. 


  • Arrive at the polling place no later than 5:00 AM on Election Day.

  • Set up voting equipment and prepare the polling place for voting.

  • Check in voters at the polling place.

  • Assist voters as requested.

  • Maintain a polling place that is orderly and accessible to all voters.

  • Accurately report results and complete paperwork to verify election information.

  • Close the polling place at 7:00 PM and remain until all closing duties have been completed and you have been dismissed by the Chief.


  1. APPLICATION: Complete an application with Prince William County to become an election officer. We must verify your eligibility and process your application which can take up to 1-2 weeks.  

  2. APPOINTMENT: Complete your appointment response. Officers are appointed each year by our Electoral Board and emailed a link to accept their response shortly after their appointment.  Your response allows you to update your availability for upcoming elections, personal preferences, work area interest, and contact information.

  3. ASSIGNMENT: You will receive an email with your assignment to a polling place approximately 6 weeks prior to each election.  Not all officers will be assigned to each election based on varying workforce needs and Virginia Code requirements related to location and bipartisan representation. 

  4. TRAINING: If assigned, you must complete a training course prior to each election. Your training will be customized to your work position, election work experience, and the type of election, etc. Training will cover information you need to know prior to the election and how to serve voters on Election Day.  Your assignment letter will include details on how to sign up for training. 


Election Officers receive the following payment stipend for working Election Day:

Chiefs                            $225

Assistant Chief             $200

Election Officer            $175 

Your required training is included in this stipend. A $25 bonus is paid to election officers for each of the following situations:

  • Qualified officers that complete an additional workshop as an Election Equipment Specialist (appointed by the Office of Elections Staff). 

  • Chiefs (or the appointed officer) that picks up the Chief materials. 

  • The Chief and additional officer that together return election materials and ballots to the Office of Elections on Election Day.


Payments are issued approximately four weeks after each election.  You will receive your payment via direct deposit and must be registered in the County's Vendor system (Mobius).



What do election officers do? 

Election officers set up the precinct for the election including making sure equipment is operating properly and signage is put in place. On Election Day, they check in voters, distribute ballots, and provide general assistance. At the end of Election Day, officers will tabulate report results, complete critical paperwork, and clean up the polling place.


How long do I work on Election Day?

​Officers have to arrive by 5:00am to open the poll by 6:00am.  The polls close at 7:00pm but officers must remain to close equipment, report results, complete paperwork, and clean up the polling places.  In most elections, officers are done their duties by approximately 8:30pm, but it can depend on a number of factors including if voters are still in line to vote at 7:00pm.  All voters in line by that time can still vote.  Officers are not permitted to leave and return to the polling place during the day.

Where will I be working?

Workers are sent an Assignment letter for each election to verify they have been selected to work a particular election.  Whenever possible, Election Officers are assigned to their "home" precinct (the polling place where they vote) unless they request otherwise. However, if there are no vacancies at the home precinct, a nearby precinct may be assigned to ensure that all polling places have proper and equitable representation.

How do I vote if I’m not working at my “home” precinct?

All Election Officers are encouraged to vote by mail or at an early voting location (whether assigned to their home precinct or not).  Officers not assigned to their home polling place should pay particular attention to this as your vote will not count if not in your home precinct and you cannot leave the polling place you are working at to vote on Election Day.  Please plan ahead accordingly.

What about food on Election Day?

Officers are not permitted to leave the precinct at any time during the day except in case of emergency (and cannot then return). Many precincts coordinate their food for the day as a potluck, some order food to be delivered, and others have each officer plan for and provide their own food.  Contact your Chief about the typical practice at your polling place.


What if I thought I could work but I can’t now?

Please email and your Chief as soon as possible so a replacement can be found.  We understand that emergencies do happen, but all officers should understand that serving as an election officer is a commitment and take their assignment seriously.


I want to work early voting. How do I do that?

Early voting work is limited and election officers will be surveyed prior to each election for availability to assist. Number of locations, days, and staff needed can vary from election to election. The best way to be eligible is to apply to serve as an election officer to gain experience. Experienced election officers and those with availability are the most likely individuals to be selected to serve during early voting.


Frequently Asked Questions
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