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How do I request an absentee ballot in Ohio?

Here is what you need to know.

OHIO, USA — Under Ohio law, voters whose registration information is up-to-date have the opportunity to vote in any election through the mail by requesting an absentee ballot. 

HOW TO REQUEST AN ABSENTEE BALLOT

Visit the Vote Ohio website and print off your absentee ballot request. 

Fill out the form, sign it and mail it in to your local county board of elections. Absentee ballot requests are also available there if you can't print yours out.

"Ohioans are accustomed to early voting and voting by mail," Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose said back in March, when a mail-in vote was the only way to vote in the primary. "You can print off your absentee ballot request and mail it in. Voteohio.gov. Your BOE will have them as well. Send them in promptly and you'll get your absentee ballot and you can return it by mail."

HOW TO VOTE USING AN ABSENTEE BALLOT

  1. Wait to receive your ballot in the mail from your county board of elections.
    If you have questions about your ballot request, call your county board of elections or you can track the status of your ballot request through the Voter Toolkit.

  2. Return your voted ballot.
    You can send you absentee ballot in by U.S. Mail or deliver it in person to your county board of elections.

    The return envelope containing your marked ballot must be received by your county board of elections prior to the close of the polls on Election Day, or postmarked no later than the day before the election and received by the board of elections no later than 10 days after the election.

    To make sure your absentee ballot is counted, it must be received by your board of elections by 7:30 p.m. on Election Day OR be postmarked by the day before Election Day.

    NOTE: The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) estimates that it may take two to five days for your voted absentee ballot to be delivered to your board of elections by mail. If you are returning your voted ballot during the week before Election Day, you should take it to USPS no later than the day before Election Day and ensure it receives a postmark as follows:

    • If you use a postage label purchased at a USPS customer service window or vending machine, the date on the label is the postmark. This is the USPS-recommended way to postmark your ballot.
    • If you use postage stamps, ask that it be postmarked.

WHAT IF YOU ARE SICK ON ELECTION DAY?

If you or your child is in the hospital on Election Day, you can submit a completed and signed request to your county board of elections by 3 p.m. that day. 

To be eligible, you or your minor child must be in the hospital because of an accident or unforeseeable medical emergency. 

If you or your child is hospitalized in the same county where you are registered to vote, two representatives of the board of elections can deliver the ballot to you, wait while you mark the ballot and return your ballot to the board office. 

Additionally, you may include in your absentee ballot application a request that your county board of elections give your unmarked ballot to a designated relative such as a spouse, parent or sibling, among others, who can take the ballot to you in the hospital and return your voted ballot to the board office. 

Click here for Hospitalized Absentee Ballot Request Form 11-B.

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