Costa Ricans living abroad no longer have to go to a consulate or embassy to register to vote or to update an address for the upcoming presidential elections of 2014.
The Supreme Elections Tribunal (TSE) launched a digital registration system on their website this week (www.tse.go.cr), where Ticos interested in voting from abroad can complete a registration form with personal information. TSE officials said the online system is completely safe.
Besides basic information, voters must provide a digital photograph, a picture of a personal signature and another of a fingerprint on paper. The online form also will ask for the expiration date of personal IDs, or cédulas.
Prior to filling out the form, registrants should read and accept a list of conditions and requirements, including descriptions and dimensions of the pictures (personal, signature and fingerprint). An online chat is available Monday-Friday, from 8 a.m.-4 p.m., for assistance in filling out the form, explained Paola Alvarado, TSE coordinator of the vote abroad program.
The website also displays information related to the 2014 elections, such as lists of legislative candidates in each province and detailed information on all presidential candidates. Maps and directions to voting centers can also be found on the website.
Records from the Immigration Administration indicate that more than 300,000 Costa Ricans live abroad, but the TSE’s latest report says that only 8,700 of them are currently registered to vote.
The deadline to register or to change a voting location is Oct. 2.