Election 2020

How Do I Vote By Mail?

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With many states still under strict social distancing guidelines and others struggling with ongoing outbreaks, the Covid-19 pandemic has transformed U.S. election laws and sparked an unprecedented expansion of voting by mail. Here’s what you need to know to cast a mail-in ballot in the 2020 general election.*

*Military and overseas voters have slightly different deadlines and processes, and should check with their state for guidelines. Also, some states might have a different process for physically disabled or homebound voters.

Do I need an excuse to vote by mail?

Yes
Yes and concern over Covid-19 counts
No excuse needed
No and automatically sent a ballot

When are the official deadlines to request a vote-by-mail ballot?

The U.S. Postal Service strongly recommends that voters request ballots at the earliest point allowable, but no later than 15 days prior to the election date (Oct. 19) in order to allow time for your request to be processed, a ballot to be mailed to you and you to return it

When are the official deadlines to return a vote-by-mail ballot?

The U.S. Postal Service recommends that voters mail their ballots at least one week prior to their states’ due dates to ensure that they are received in time to be counted
Note: In Missouri and Tennessee, absentee ballots must be returned by mail. In North Dakota, the in-person deadline is Nov. 2 if returning the ballot to a drop-box. Some states offer electronic ballot submission for disabled, ill or elderly voters.

Do I need a notary or witness to vote by mail?

No
Yes, either
Yes, witness
Yes, notary
Note: Some states may include an exception for voters of advanced age, or with a medical condition or a physical disability.

What are my state’s deadlines to request and return a vote-by-mail ballot?