Can You Vote Absentee?

In order to vote in U.S. elections you must be:

  • A citizen of the United States on the date of the election in which you wish to vote
  • At least 18 years old on Election Day. (Some States allow 17-year olds to vote in primary elections if they will be 18 on or before the general election.)

The absentee voting process applies to you if you are:

  • An active duty member of the U.S. Uniformed Services, Merchant Marine or Activated National Guard
  • A family member (spouse or dependent)
  • A U.S. citizen residing outside the U.S.

Federal Election Deadlines

Registration Ballot Request Ballot Return
Presidential Primary March 15, 2016
Received by* February 17, 2016
Received by March 11, 2016
Return by Mail: Postmarked by** March 14, 2016
Return by Email or Fax: Received by 7 PM, March 15, 2016
State Primary August 2, 2016
Received by* July 6, 2016
Received by July 29, 2016
Return by Mail: Postmarked by** August 1, 2016
Return by Email or Fax: Received by 7 PM, August 2, 2016
General Election
November 8, 2016
Received by* October 12, 2016
Received by November 4, 2016
Return by Mail: Postmarked by** November 7, 2016
Return by Email or Fax: Received by 7 PM, November 8, 2016

*Registration: The FWAB must be received by the 28th day before the election if used for registration.

**Ballot Return: Mailed ballots must be received by the 3rd day after the election.

Please mail your voting materials early enough to account for mail delivery times. Check the recommended mailing dates section in Chapter 1 for details.

Register to Vote, Request a Ballot, or Update My Voter Info

You must register and request an absentee ballot in your State of legal residence by completing the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) and submit it to your local election office.

Download fillable FPCA

Get My Ballot

If you have registered and requested an absentee ballot by the request deadline, you may you may use the Federal Write-In Ballot (FWAB).

Download fillable FWAB

Check the Status of My Voted Ballot

After sending in your voted absentee ballot, you are entitled to find out its status.