Disability Rights Texas Handout
Last updated: 08/2013
Publication Code: HA14
The Voter ID Exemption – Proving Disability
This handout is available in Braille and/or on audio tape upon request.
If you are a voter with a disability that does not have a photo ID, you can get a permanent exemption from the photo ID requirement if:
- You provide a letter from the U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA) verifying that you have a disability determination from the SSA.
- You provide a letter from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) verifying that you have a disability rating of more than 50% from the VA.
Social Security Administration
To prove that you are receiving social security benefits: You can request a benefit verification letter which is an official letter from Social Security that can be used as proof of your disability.
For individuals that have internet access: You can request a benefit verification letter online. You must have an online account at http://tinyurl.com/SSA-online-ltr in order to do so. Once you finish selecting the information you want in your letter, you can then print and use it. Your online benefit verification letter will have a dollar amount on it.
For individuals that don’t have internet access, or who prefer to have a letter that doesn’t have a benefit amount on it: You can call the Social Security Administration at 1-800-772-1213 and ask the agent for a letter verifying that you receive disability benefits. Tell the agent if you don’t want the dollar amount of your benefit included in the letter. For this option, a hard copy letter will be mailed to you.
US Department of Veterans Affairs
To prove your disability rating, a veteran (or someone on behalf of the veteran) can request a rating percentage letter. Veterans do get these at the time the determination is made, but if they lose it or for whatever reason need another one, they may call the main number for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 1-800-827-1000, select the appropriate options, and another letter will be sent via mail or fax. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affair will respond to a request by a person other than the vet, as long as the request is to send the letter to the address that the department has on record for the veteran.
Your local SSA or VA office may also be able to assist you in getting your letter.
How to apply for the exemption
In addition to the proof of disability, you must submit an application for the exemption. Go online to http://tinyurl.com/ExemptApp for the application in English or Spanish.
Both the application and the letter must be submitted to your county’s voter registrar more than 30 days before an upcoming election if you wish to use the exemption for that election.
Voting Rights Hotline:
Main Line: 512-454-4816
Disclaimer: Disability Rights Texas strives to update its materials on an annual basis, and this handout is based upon the law at the time it was written. The law changes frequently and is subject to various interpretations by different courts. Future changes in the law may make some information in this handout inaccurate.
The handout is not intended to and does not replace an attorney’s advice or assistance based on your particular situation.