No disputes are expected in Iowa or Nebraska that could delay certification.
Tuesday, Dec. 1: Nevada, Wisconsin
This is the deadline for Nevada and Wisconsin, both of which Mr. Biden won, to certify their results.
In Nevada, the first step is for county commissioners to certify the results and send them to the secretary of state, who will present summaries to the Nevada Supreme Court. Ultimately, the governor will need to confirm the outcome. The Trump campaign has filed a lawsuit baselessly claiming that Mr. Trump actually won Nevada, and conservative groups are trying to nullify the results, but these claims are highly unlikely to lead anywhere.
Wisconsin has already completed county-level certification, but the Trump campaign is seeking a partial recount, which, if it proceeds, should be complete by the deadline and is not expected to alter the results significantly. Once the recount is completed, the Wisconsin Elections Commission will meet to certify the results statewide.
Tuesday, Dec. 8
This is a key date in the democratic process: If states resolve all disputes and certify their results by Dec. 8, the results should be insulated from further legal challenges, ensuring that states won by Mr. Biden will send Biden delegates to the Electoral College.
The certification processes leading up to this date vary from state to state, but the final step is the same everywhere under federal law: The governor of each state must compile the certified results and send them to Congress, along with the names of the state’s Electoral College delegates.
Monday, Dec. 14
Electors will meet on Dec. 14 in their respective states and cast their votes. This vote is, constitutionally, what determines the next president.
Mr. Biden has 306 electoral votes to Mr. Trump’s 232. Many states formally require their electors to vote for the candidate they pledged to vote for, generally the winner of the state’s popular vote. Historically, rogue electors have been few and far between, and have never altered the outcome.