Election Judges

Serving as an Election Judge is a great way to learn about elections, how the process works, and to serve your community.  

If you feel you would be a great fit or would like to learn more about the election process, please complete an Election Judge Information form and return to the Sibley County Auditor-Treasurer's Office to be contacted for the 2024 election year.   

Duties of Election Judges

Election judges are responsible for the administration of election procedures in the voting place and help to guarantee that the rights of voters are protected on Election Day.  Duties may include:

  • Opening and closing the polls (judges may work from 6:00 am to 8:00 pm or later; however half-day shifts may be available)
  • Setting up and/or taking down the polling place and voting equipment
  • Checking in and registering new voters at the polling site
  • Being responsible for all election materials
  • Ensuring only qualified voters are permitted to vote only once
  • Distributing ballots
  • Helping voters requiring assistance
  • Maintaining order in the voting place throughout the day
  • Obtaining the results after the polls are closed

Basic Qualifications

  • To serve as an election judge, you must be eligible to vote in Minnesota and be able to read, write, and speak English.
  • You must be at least 18 years of age, a resident of Minnesota for at least 20 days, and be a citizen of the United States.
  • You must complete an election judge training course either online or in person before you serve.  The training will be at least two hours in length and the certification is valid for two years.  Certification can be renewed by repeating the course every two years. Head judges, Health Care Facility judges, and Ballot Board judges are required to complete extra training.
  • Candidates for office cannot be an election judge in a precinct where they appear on the ballot. This includes those who are actively campaigning as a write-in candidate.
  • A person who is a relative of a candidate for office cannot serve in a precinct where that candidate is on the ballot. Relatives include a spouse, parent, child, stepchild, brother, sister, stepbrother, or stepsister.
  • A person who temporarily or permanently lives in the same house as a candidate cannot serve in a precinct where that candidate is on the ballot.
  • Election judges who are relatives to each other cannot serve together in the same precinct during the same shift. Relatives include a spouse, parent, child, stepchild, brother, sister, stepbrother, or stepsister. Relatives can work separate, non-overlapping shifts in the same precinct.

Student Election Judges

To be an election judge trainee, students must meet the following criteria: 

  • Be age 16 to 18
  • Be enrolled in a high school or be home-schooled in Minnesota
  • Have the approval of a parent 
  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Be able to read, write, and speak English

Upon turning 18, students may serve as a regular election judge. 

Selection of Judges & Payment for Services

The governing body of the municipality or township appoints election judges for precincts in a municipality and townships.  The Sibley County Auditor-Treasurer's Office appoints election judges for the ballot board.

Payment for service varies according to each precinct's policy and will include time for training and mileage in addition to election day duties.  Like jury duty, Minnesota law allows you time off from work with full work pay if you give 20 days' prior notice to your employer.