Since the foreclosure crisis began in 2008, there have been over 10 million foreclosure filings in the United States. With almost two voting-age adults on average per household the foreclosure crisis—which often takes months, or even years, to sort out for each homeowner—could affect the ability of a substantial number of people to vote if steps are not taken to minimize its impact.
Foreclosure affects voting because, in each state, one must reside or be deemed to have a residence in the state in order to vote. The foreclosure process adds elements of uncertainty to a voter’s residency, leading to confusion on the part of voters and even election officials. For foreclosure victims, where in the foreclosure process the individual is can make a difference in what they need to do in order to vote.
Voters should not lose their right to vote simply because they have lost their homes. The Fair Elections Legal Network has issued a report "Lose Your Home, Keep Your Vote: How to Protect Voters Caught Up in Foreclosure" to describe the how forecosure can threaten a voters ability to vote, identifies steps to reduce or eliminate the impact of foreclosure on voting, and provides a model approach for the state chief election officials to minimize the disenfranchisement of foreclsoure victims in 2012 and beyond. Additionally, FELN has developed state guides for the states most impacted by the foreclosure crisis.
FELN Report: Lose Your Home, Keep Your Vote: How to Protect Voters Caught Up in Foreclosure
State Guides for Voters in Foreclosure
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- Report: Foreclosure Crisis May Threaten Voters’ Rights in 2010 Mid-term Elections If Secretaries of State Don’t Act
- As Homes Are Lost , Fears That Votes Will Be, Too