Vote By Mail
Am I eligible to vote by mail?
Yes, all Ohio registered voters can vote by mail using an absentee ballot.
I want to vote by mail. How do I get started?
To vote by mail in Ohio, you must first request your mail-in ballot. There are three main ways to get your ballot:
- You can call your county Board of Elections and ask them to mail you a copy of the absentee ballot application. You can find your county Board of Elections phone number at this link.
- You can download and fill out an absentee ballot application at this link.
- You can go to your county Board of Elections and complete the absentee ballot application in-person.
Once you receive the application, you must print, sign, and return the application by mail or drop it off at your county Board of Elections office.
REMEMBER: ACT QUICKLY! REQUEST YOUR BALLOT IMMEDIATELY TO ENSURE AMPLE TIME TO RETURN IT.
Can’t I request my vote by mail ballot online?
No. You can download and fill out the form online. However, you must still print, sign and then mail or drop off the application at your county Board of Elections office.
How can I return my completed ballot once I receive it?
After you request your ballot, your county Board of Elections office will mail it to you.
Once you receive your ballot, you must:
- Carefully mark your ballot according to the accompanying instructions.
- Place your marked ballot in the identification envelope. Your ballot must be inside this envelope to be counted.
- Fill out the identification envelope with your information. You must complete all five sections. Don’t forget to sign the voter declaration!
- Place the identification envelope and ballot inside the larger return envelope.
- Return your ballot by mailing it in or dropping it off at your county Board of Elections office or ballot dropbox. You can find the address of your Board of Elections here.
IF RETURNING YOUR BALLOT BY MAIL, SEND IT AS SOON AS POSSIBLE AND BE SURE TO USE SUFFICIENT POSTAGE!
What is the deadline for returning my vote by mail ballot?
The deadline to return your ballot depends on how you return it:
- By mail: Your ballot must be mailed and postmarked by the day before Election Day.
- In person: Your ballot can be returned in person to your county Board of Elections office or dropbox by 7:30 p.m. on Election Day.
Can I return my vote by mail ballot to my polling place on Election Day?
No. Election Day precinct polling locations CANNOT accept your vote by mail ballot. Take it to your county Board of Elections office or dropbox by 7:30 p.m. on Election Day.
What if I applied for a vote by mail ballot but I want to vote in person during early vote or on Election Day?
So long as you did not return your vote by mail ballot, you can go to your early voting location and vote, or you can go to your precinct polling location on Election Day and vote. You can bring your unused vote by mail ballot with you and return it when you arrive at your polling location, but it is not required. If you decide to vote on Election Day, or if during Early Vote the Board has a record of your ballot being returned, be aware you will be asked to cast a provisional ballot. Fill this out correctly and your vote will count!
When will a ballot be sent to me?
County Boards of Elections can begin mailing ballots to those who requested them when early vote begins.
How do I know if my vote by mail ballot was received?
You can track the status of your ballot application and your ballot at voteohio.gov/track. Enter your information to see when:
- Your application for your absentee ballot was approved,
- Your ballot was mailed to you,
- Your completed ballot was received, and
- Your ballot was accepted.
Can someone else return my vote by mail ballot for me?
Only near relatives can mail or deliver a ballot to your county Board of Elections office for you. A near relative includes your spouse or father, mother, father-in-law, mother-in-law, grandfather, grandmother, brother, or sister of whole or half blood, or the son, daughter, adopting parent, adopted child, stepparent, stepchild, uncle, aunt, nephew, or niece.
What if I made a mistake, lost or never received my ballot?
Contact your county Board of Elections as soon as possible to request a new ballot. You can receive up to two replacement ballots if you lose or spoil your ballot, or if it is lost in the mail.
Is there an accessible vote by mail ballot option for people with disabilities?
Yes. Please click here for further information.