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2020 Census Questions: Hispanic Origin



The Census Bureau is no longer collecting responses to the 2020 Census. This page provided guidance for responding, including where to count yourself and who to count on your questionnaire.


The 2020 Census asked a series of questions about you and each person who lives with you. When responding, you were asked to record the Hispanic origin of each person living in your home on April 1, 2020.

We understand you might have had questions when providing this information. Here were some guidelines for responding:

  • Your answer to this question should be based on how you identify. Each person can decide how to answer.
  • You are free to choose where to report your identity and which boxes to mark, or not to mark.
  • You are not required to mark a checkbox category in order to enter a response in the write-in area. You may respond by entering your specific identity or identities in the write-in response area on the Hispanic origin question.
  • If you don't know the answer, please move on to the next question.
  • In the online questionnaire, if you check the “Another Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin” checkbox, but leave the origin field blank, a message will appear at the top of the screen and the blank field will be highlighted in red. If you do not know this person's origin, click next again to continue completing your response.

The information below, listed in the same order as the questionnaire, was provided to help you respond:

The category “Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin" includes all individuals who identify with one or more nationalities or ethnic groups originating in Mexico, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Central and South America, and other Spanish cultures. Examples of these groups include, but are not limited to, Mexican or Mexican American, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Salvadoran, Dominican, and Colombian. “Hispanic, Latino or Spanish origin” also includes groups such as Guatemalan, Honduran, Spaniard, Ecuadorian, Peruvian, Venezuelan, etc. If a person is not of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin, answer "No, not of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin".

There are individual checkboxes for people who identify as:

  • Not of Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin
  • Mexican, Mexican Am., Chicano
  • Puerto Rican
  • Cuban
  • Another Hispanic, Latino, or Spanish origin (for example, Salvadoran, Dominican, Colombian, Guatemalan, Spaniard, Ecuadorian, etc.)

More about the Question

We asked the question this way to comply with the federal government’s standards—provided by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget—for collecting data on race and Hispanic origin.

First, the question was based on how you identify. Second, the standards require us to collect and report data for a minimum of two ethnicities: “Hispanic or Latino” and “Not Hispanic or Latino.” The standards define “Hispanic or Latino” as a person of Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, South or Central American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race.

If an individual did not provide a Hispanic origin response, their origin may have been assigned from previous census records or federal administrative records, if available, or was allocated using specific rules of precedence of household relationship. For example, if origin was missing for a natural-born child in the household, then either the origin of the householder, another natural-born child, or spouse of the householder was allocated.

If Hispanic origin could not be assigned from other sources and was not reported for anyone in the household, then the Hispanic origin of a householder in a previously processed household with the same race was allocated to the individual missing a response.

To learn more about how we process 2020 Census responses, please visit the Conducting the Count page.