How to apply for your Vote-By-Mail ballot

Don't wait! Apply for your vote-by-mail ballot today and help flatten the absentee ballot request curve

Boards of Elections will be overwhelmed if all the requests come in at once. Submit your request early and then track your ballot.

Ohio Voters!

In this time of COVID, many people will prefer to vote by mail to avoid long lines and possible exposures. DO NOT WAIT until the last minute to request an absentee ballot. As we saw in the primary election, there will be a rush of last-minute ballot requests. Last-minute requests may not get processed in time. To request a mail-in ballot for the November election, you need to complete an Absentee Ballot Request form. There are several ways to do this:

CALL. Call your county Board of Elections and have them send you an absentee ballot application. Once it arrives, sign and date the form, and mail it back in. You can buy a stamp at a grocery store or the post office. It’s easy! You can also drop off the completed form in person at the board of elections.

PRINT. Find and fill out an absentee ballot request form online, then print, sign, date, and mail it to your county Board of Elections. Don’t forget the stamp! 

WALK IN. Complete the absentee application form in person at your county Board of Elections


WRITE. No printer? No worries! You can put all the information needed on any piece of paper and mail it to your county Board of Elections. Be sure to include the following information: 

    • Your name;
    • Your legal signature;
    • The address at which you are registered to vote;
    • Your date of birth;
    • One of the following items showing proof of your identification:
      • Your Ohio driver’s license number (begins with two letters followed by six numbers);
      • The last four digits of your Social Security number; or
      • A copy of a current and valid photo identification, a military identification, or a current (within the last 12 months) utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck or other government document (other than a notice of voter registration mailed by a board of elections) that shows the voter’s name and current address.
    • A statement identifying the election for which you are requesting an absentee ballot;
    • A statement that you are a qualified elector;
    • If the request is for a partisan primary election ballot, your political party affiliation; and
    • If you want the ballot to be mailed to a different address than where you are registered, the address to which you want it mailed.

I’ve applied for my Vote-by-Mail ballot. Now what?

Once you have sent in your absentee application and it has been received at the BOE, you can track your ballot online. If you don’t see a record of the application being received, call your county Board of Elections and ask what’s going on. 

Remember, this is just the application. In October, your county board of elections will mail you your actual ballot. After you complete the ballot, mail it back with at least TWO STAMPS on the envelope. 

Here’s a Tip: Don’t put your voted ballot in a mail box. Bring it in to the postoffice to make sure it is postmarked! If you don’t want to mail it, you always have the option of dropping off your completed ballot in person at your county board of elections.

Questions? Contact your BOE, or email Common Cause Ohio at

Help flatten the vote-by-mail ballot request curve: apply for yours today!