As of July 1, 2016, the term "Absentee Ballot" has changed to "Vote-by-Mail Ballot".
What is Vote-by-Mail?
Vote-by-mail refers to voting a ballot received by mail or picked up by or for a voter who is unable or unwilling to go to the polls to vote during early voting or Election Day. A voter does not have to be absent from the county of residence or have an excuse in order to vote-by-mail except on Election Day (see details below). A request covers all elections through the end of the calendar year for the second ensuing regularly scheduled general election, unless specified otherwise.
Requesting a Ballot
To receive a vote-by-mail ballot, the voter or authorized person must make a request in one of the following ways:
For those making the request on behalf of themselves, the following information is required:
- The name of the voter for whom the ballot is being requested;
- The voter's address;
- The voter's date of birth; and
- The voter's signature (if the request is written)
If a request is being made on behalf of an immediate family member or legal guardian, the following additional information must be provided:
- The requestor's address;
- The requestor's driver's license number (if available);
- The requestor's relationship to the voter; and
- The requestor's signature (if the request is written)
The deadline to request that a vote-by-mail ballot be mailed is no later than 5 p.m. on the sixth day before the election. Otherwise, a vote-by-mail ballot can be picked-up until and including on Election Day. However, the ballot must still be received by the Supervisor of Elections no later than 7 p.m. on Election Day if the voted ballot is to count.
Correcting a Missing or Mismatched Signature on a Vote-by-Mail Ballot
If you were notified by this office because you did not sign the Voter’s Certificate before returning your Vote-By-Mail Ballot OR because the signature does not match the voter’s signature on file, you must complete This Form and return it to our office not later than 5 PM on the day before the election. In addition to the completed form, you must also send a copy of an allowable identification as outlined in the form instructions. Complete instructions are included on the form. The deadline to submit the Affidavit is no later than 5 p.m. on the day before the election. Failure to follow the Affidavit instructions carefully may cause your ballot not to count.
Picking Up Someone Else's Ballot (5 days prior to an election)
Within five (5) days of an election, a voter may authorize a designee (in writing) to pick up a Vote-By-Mail ballot, that designee must provide the above information in addition to completing the
Affidavit to Pick Up a Vote-By-Mail Ballot for Voter form.
Federal Voting Assistance Program (Uniformed Military and Overseas Citizens)
Should you be interested, St. Johns County is among a coalition of 34 Florida counties in a special vote-by-mail ballot electronic delivery project through 2018. Anyone who is an absent uniformed voter or family member (stateside or overseas), or other overseas civilian is eligible to use this system. Voters who use this system can access ballots as soon as they are available and can either print a blank ballot or use the online ballot marking wizard. You can find more information about this system, or log in to use it by Clicking Here.
The Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP) works to ensure Service members, their eligible family members and overseas citizens are aware of their right to vote and have the tools and resources to successfully do so - from anywhere in the world.
The Director of FVAP administers the Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) on behalf of the Secretary of Defense. UOCAVA, as amended by the Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment (MOVE) Act, requires States to transmit requested absentee ballots to UOCAVA voters no later than 45 days before a federal election. Those citizens protected by UOCAVA include:
- Members of the Uniformed Services (Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard, United States Public Health Service Commissioned Corps, and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Commissioned Corps)
- Members of the Merchant Marines
- Eligible family members of the above
- U.S. citizens residing outside the U.S.
FVAP assists voters through partnerships with the Military Services, Department of State, Department of Justice and election officials from 50 States, U.S. territories and the District of Columbia.
Visit the Federal Voting Assistance Program for more information about the program, download the necessary Election Material forms , or view their online Voting Assistance Guide .