Saturday, June 2, 2012

Virginia Absentee Voting and Voter Registration Deadlines

Written by Scott Cooper

Many of my friends in Virginia are unclear of some of the upcoming deadlines and requirements – so I wanted to provide you with some helpful information!

Absentee Voting Available

Absentee Voting is currently available to all Virginia residents for the Republican Primary. If you meet any of the following criteria, you may vote absentee instead of having to drive to your local polling place
  • Students at institutions of higher learning, and their spouses
  • Absent for business purposes
  • Absent for personal business or vacation
  • Scheduled to work at one’s workplace at least 11 of the 13 hours the polls are open (includes commuting) (6:00 AM to 7:00 PM)
  • Firefighters and first responder personnel
  • Unable to get to the polls because of disability, illness, or pregnancy
  • Caretakers of confined family members
  • Awaiting trial and under confinement
  • Serving time for misdemeanor convictions
  • Religious conflicts
  • Active duty uniformed services or merchant marine personnel and dependents residing with them
  • Regularly employed outside the U.S. and dependents residing with them
  • Living abroad indefinitely (may be eligible to vote only for federal offices)
  • Registrars, electoral board members, or officers of election scheduled to work the election
  • Political party or candidate representative volunteers scheduled to work inside the polls or at different polling places
WARNING: If you register to vote by mail, you must vote in person the first time you vote unless you are a full time college student; on active duty military’ residing overseas; physically handicapped; or age 65+ (with another qualifying reason, as age alone is not a justification). First-time voters who register in person may vote by absentee ballot.

Important Deadlines:

Deadline to submit application for ballot to be mailed: 5 pm on Tue June 5
Ballots must be received in order to be counted: 7 pm on Election Day
In-person absentee voting: Starts Apr 27 and ends at 5 pm on Sat Jun 9
Hours for in-person absentee voting: 8-5 Mon-Fri through Jun 8 (Office closed May 28), and Sat Jun 9, 8:30-5  Location of in-person absentee voting: Depends upon the county/city. To find your county’s/city’s location click here.

How do you apply for an Absentee Ballot:

  • Eligible Virginia registered voters can download an application or contact your local Voter Registration Office to request an absentee ballot application. You can either return the completed application to your local voter registration office either by mail or fax. The absentee ballot application must be received in your local voter registration office by 5:oo PM eastern standard time on the Tuesday prior before the election day in which the applicant offers to vote.
  • If you are an absent active duty military voter (or spouse/dependent) or overseas voter you should download the Federal Post Card Application instead of the Virginia application. After downloading the application form: 1) print the form, 2) read the instructions accompanying the form, 3) fill out the requested information on the form carefully, 4) sign the form and, 5) mail or fax the completed application to your local general registrar’s officeby 5 :00 PM eastern standard time on the Tuesday prior to the election in which the applicant offers to vote .
  • Alternatively, you can go to the Republican Party of Virginia’s GOP Absentee website to get an Absentee Ballot Request form. This form must be completed and then mailed or faxed to your local Registrar’s Office, so that an “Official Ballot” can be mailed to you.
If you require additional information, you can visit the Virginia State Board of Elections.

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