Voting Assistance Officers

Voting Assistance Officers (VAOs) ensure that military and overseas voters understand their voting rights and how to register and vote absentee, and provide accurate nonpartisan voting information and assistance. VAOs may be members of the Uniformed Services, civilians, or members of overseas U.S. citizen organizations.

Are you a new Voting Assistance Officer (VAO)? Don't worry, it is very manageable and won't take too much time. Everything you need can be found in this section of the website. Highlights are provided below:

UOCAVA Voting Process

Learn the multi-step process for how military and overseas citizen voters can request and return absentee ballots.


Training is available online, and FVAP conducts in-person workshops during even-numbered years.


To assist Service members, their families and overseas citizens, FVAP has created materials that cover many topics related to absentee voting.

Voting Assistance Guide

The Guide is a collection of State-specific rules, processes, election dates and deadlines to assist military and overseas voters in successfully registering to vote and returning a ballot.

Directives and Guidance

These reference materials outline the official requirements and guidelines for Voting Assistance Officers when performing their duties.


Continuity Folder

This folder is required and serves as a resource for your successor. It is also an inspectable IG item.

Voting Emphasis Weeks

FVAP works with you to promote voter registration and absentee voting by conducting Voting Emphasis Weeks.

Voter Alerts

Our office will send you pertinent information about elections, release of workshop schedules, events, etc. Make sure you sign up to receive our voter alerts.

Service Voting Action Officers

Each Military Service and the Department of State has an assigned Service Voting Action Officer (SVAO) who is the voting program manager for that Service or Department.

Military Recruiter Information

All personnel assigned to duty at Recruiting Offices for the Armed Forces must be trained as Voting Assistance Officers and capable of providing voter registration services.