> Election Officials > USPS Mail Guidelines
The Federal Post Card Application (FPCA), the back-up Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB), acknowledgement cards, and other election materials can all be sent postage paid via First-Class Mail to citizens covered by Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA).
For specific guidelines for preparing ballot materials, review Section 703.8.0 of the USPS Domestic Mail Manual or the USPS Election Officials' Mailing Resource Site.
Follow these USPS guidelines when designing and printing your absentee balloting envelopes for UOCAVA voters:
Use this envelope style to send balloting materials to voters:
Ballot Transmission Envelope
(Opens in a new window and requires Adobe Reader 7)
Use these envelope styles when designing your voter ballot return envelopes. We request that you include your local election office's return address on the front of the envelope. Additionally, there are two samples of the back of the envelope. One is for use when a witness is required and the other is used when no witness is required. Use whichever envelope style your state law requires.
Ballot Return Envelope - Front
Ballot Return Envelope - Back (Witness not required)
Ballot Return Envelope - Back (Witness required)
(All files open in a new window and require Adobe Reader 7)
What Is It?
Tag 191 identifies both domestic and UOCAVA election mail prepared at the First-Class Mail or Standard Mail rates. Tag 191 has a highly visible lime green color that displays the Official Election Mail Logo and the words "Ballots Only". The tag is not required but may be used for official ballot mail addressed for domestic or international delivery that is prepared in trays or sacks.
Only election officials may use Tag 191 to identify ballot mail. Organizations or individuals who send materials that promote political candidates, referendums, or political campaigns may NOT use the Tag.
Attach Tag 191 to mail under these guidelines:
Ask your local Postmaster, Mail Piece Design Analyst, or Business Mail Entry Unit Contact to order a supply, and remember to make your request early.
At your own expense, you may send balloting materials to UOCAVA citizens faster than first-class mail. USPS provides several options:
Consider using Express Mail Military Service (EMMS). EMMS offers 2-3 day service to locations throughout the world. It is available at all USPS facilities that accept domestic Express Mail. For guidelines and specifications, refer to Section 703.2.6 of the Domestic Mail Manual. Contact your local post office for more information about EMMS and its availability.
Consider using one of the many expedited service options. Some of these services include: Global Express Guaranteed, Express Mail International, and Priority Mail International. For more information about these services refer to USPS International Shipments.
Last updated: 09.18.2013