Registering and Voting Absentee
The federal Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) and conforming state legislation cover active duty members of the US armed forces, the merchant marine, spouses and dependents of all who reside outside of their home county, and US citizens residing overseas. They may apply for voter registration and for Vote by Mail ballots with a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) which may be obtained from a Voting Assistance Officer (VAO) or at www.fvap.gov, the web site of the Federal Voting Assistance Program. Vote by Mail requests from these voters will be effective for all elections through the next two regularly scheduled general elections.
UOCAVA voters may also use the Florida registration form, notate their military status on it, and the same privileges would apply to them. Military voters residing within the county in which they wish to register should use the Florida Voter Registration Application and indicate their military status, so the supervisor may insure their UOCAVA status when they move out of the county but wish to maintain voting residency.
UOCAVA voters (those with an APO, FPO or foreign address only, not Hawaii, American Samoa, etc.) may have Vote by Mail ballots faxed or emailed, if there is a problem with mail.
Ballots can be returned by fax, but not by email, and voter then waives secrecy. However, access to faxed ballots in the elections office is extremely restricted and ballots are immediately placed in secrecy envelopes without handling. Only the Voter's Certificate, which must be signed and dated, is examined.
For those overseas voters who provide an email address, we will advise them of the races by email when that is available at least 30 days before an election. We encourage all UOCAVA voters to include their email addresses on any forms or correspondence, and to update them along with mailing addresses whenever they move.
The most important thing to remember is to notify the elections office of address changes so you don't jeopardize your active voter registration status, and email is the best way. Additional information for UOCAVA voters is available from the Federal Voting Assistance Program, toll-free 1-800-438-8683, fax 1-800-368-8683, and email email@example.com.
|Click here to request a Vote by Mail ballot. |
|Click here to track the status of your Vote by Mail ballot. |
To register to vote & request your Vote by Mail Ballot through the Federal Voter Assistance Program click here.
Our Mission: Your Vote
Thirty-four Florida counties have come together to provide online ballot access to absent uniformed service members, their families, and citizens living outside the U.S. The online system cuts ballot delivery time in half since voters can access their ballot shortly after a request is validated. Help spread the word! Registered voters from participating counties can access their ballot by visiting:
SERVING FLORIDA'S ABSENT VOTERS and nearly every military installation in Florida!
Federal Write-In Ballot
With the passage of the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2005 in October 2004, the Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB) may now be used by all absent Uniformed Service voters both inside and outside the continental United States, as well as U.S. citizens residing overseas. This broadens the use of the FWAB, as military voters were previously not allowed to use it when residing inside the country but outside their voting jurisdiction.
The Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot is basically a back-up or emergency ballot used for the general election in the event that the voter does not receive their requested regular Vote by Mail ballot in time for it to be voted and returned to the local election official to be counted. If the voter does not have access to the hard copy, it is available online through our Overseas Vote Foundation website at www.OverseasVoteFoundation.org.
The second change to the FWAB in the recent law concerns the Vote by Mail request deadline. Previously, the UOCAVA voter had to have requested an absentee ballot at least 30 days prior to the election. Now, the request must be received at least 30 days before the general election or before the deadline established by the state, whichever is later.
It is vitally important for voters to request Vote by Mail ballots as early as possible, the beginning of each year is advisable. Equally important is to keep the local election official's office apprised of any address changes once a request is made. Vote by Mail ballots that are Returned Undeliverable to the Elections Office because of a bad address automatically cancel the voter's Vote by Mail request, and the voter must make a new request providing the correct address.
State Write-In Ballot
No earlier than 180 days before a general election, an overseas voter may request a state write-in absentee ballot. In the request the voter must indicate that due to military or other contingencies that preclude normal mail delivery, the voter cannot vote a regular Vote by Mail ballot during the normal voting period. The ballot will contain only the races, and the voter must fill in the names of candidates OR write in the name of a political party, in which case all candidates of that party will be counted if they are in fact on the ballot.
An individual, or accompanying family member, who has been discharged or separated from the uniformed services or merchant marine, or from employment outside the US after the book closing for an election, and who is otherwise qualified, may register to vote in such election at the Supervisor of Elections Office until 5:00 p.m. on the Friday before the election. Such persons must produce sufficient documentation showing evidence of qualifying for the late registration pursuant to Section 97.0555 Florida Statutes.