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Absentee Voting

Registered voters who cannot make it to the polls on Election Day because of occupation, business, studies, travel, imprisonment (other than a convicted felon), illness, disability and hospitalization or resident in a long term care facility, may vote by absentee ballot.

There are two options for New York City voters wishing to cast absentee ballots:

  • Voting in person at your Board of Elections office in your borough
  • By mail.

In-Person Absentee Voting

Absentee voting in person begins as soon as the ballots are available (at least 32 days before an election) and ends on Election Day.

In person absentee voting is conducted during the above period, at the Board of Elections' Borough Offices. The hours are 9:00AM to 5:00PM and on Election Day until 9:00PM. Monday through Friday and on the weekend prior to Election Day.

By-Mail Absentee Voting

In order to vote by Absentee Ballot, you must request an Absentee Ballot Application.

Mail absentee ballot requests must include the following information:

  • Name
  • Address on voter registration
  • Mailing address (if different)
  • Reason for voting absentee
  • Signature

You can get an Absentee Ballot Application by:

  • Call the Phone Bank at 1.866.VOTE.NYC and we'll send you a postage-paid Absentee Ballot Application form in the mail.
  • Visit one of our Offices in person

Fill out the Absentee Ballot Application completely using only a pen with blue or black ink

Either bring in person or mail (DO NOT FAX) the Absentee Ballot Application to your Board of Election borough office.

To be counted, an absentee ballot must be postmarked by the day before Election Day and must reach the Board of Elections no more than seven(7) days after the election.

Emergency Absentee Ballots

If the deadline for requesting an absentee ballot by mail has passed and you cannot appear at the polls on Election Day because of an accident or sudden illness, then you may send a representative with an authorized letter to receive an Absentee Ballot Application and Absentee Ballot and return both to the Board of Elections by 9:00 P.M. on Election Day at your Borough office.

Using an Absentee Ballot

When you receive an absentee ballot, read the directions that are printed in it. You will note that the way to mark your votes is to fill in the ovals near your choices. Do not use any other marks. Do not write anywhere on the ballot. The only time you may write on the ballot is when you want to vote for someone else whose name does not appear on the ballot - then you may write his or her name in the write-in box and fill in the oval in that box. If there are propositions up for vote, you will find them on the back of the ballot. Mark your vote by filling in the oval next to either "yes" or "no". The paper ballots are canvassed by scanning them with machines so be sure to follow the directions and mark them correctly.

After making your votes on the ballot by filling in the ovals near your choices, fold the ballot and put it in a smaller envelope. Sign and date the back of the envelope. Seal the envelope and put it in the larger envelope that is addressed to the Board of Elections. Mail or deliver your ballot following the regulations described in the other sections above.


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