Vote By Mail

Last Updated: October 5, 2020


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Voting by mail is safe and secure – don’t let the media fool you.

All Pennsylvania registered voters are eligible to vote by mail, even if they qualify for an absentee ballot. Mail-in ballots are encouraged instead of absentee ballots because it’s an easier process.

If you request a mail-in ballot and decide you would rather go in person, you can bring your mail-in ballot to your polling location on Election Day and request a provisional ballot.


How to vote by mail


Step 1: Request a Ballot
    • You can request a mail-in ballot online here.
    • You need a PA Driver’s License or PennDOT ID to sign up online.
    • Requests for mail-in ballots must be received by the County Board of Elections by 5:00pm on Tuesday, October 27th. It is STRONGLY encouraged to request as soon as possible to avoid overwhelming the United States Postal Service and ensure ballots are delivered on time.
    • Check the status of your mail-in ballot at
    • You can also request a mail-in ballot through the mail
    • Download a paper application for a mail ballot here.
    • Print the application form and fill it out
    • Mail it to your County’s Board of Elections
    • Find your County’s office at
    • Requests for mail-in ballots must be received by the County Board of Elections by 5:00pm on Tuesday, October 27th.
    • Check the status of your mail-in ballot at


Step 2: Complete the Ballot
    • Complete the ballot using blue or black pen, following the instructions
    • Be precise with your marks on the ballot – avoid stray marks!
    • Place the completed ballot in the secrecy envelope. If you do not use the secrecy envelope, your vote will not count. Do not make any marks on the secrecy envelope.
    • Put the secrecy envelope into the second larger envelope with the declaration printed on it.
    • Be sure to sign the voter declaration on the return envelope or your vote will not count.


Step 3: Deliver the Ballot
    • Option A: Return the ballot in person
      • Deliver the ballot in person to your County Board of Elections.
        • The address should be on the envelope. Or you can find your County’s office at
        • You must do this yourself – no one can drop it off for you.
        • DO NOT drop off a ballot for another person – this is NOT LEGAL according to PA Act 77.
        • You can double check the status of your ballot after you drop it off at
      • It is possible that you could use a dropbox set up by your County.
        • Ballot dropboxes were approved by the PA Supreme Court, but are determined by individual PA counties – you should check with your county to see if they will have ballot dropboxes and where they will be. Find your county’s contact information at
        • Ballots returned in person must be returned by 8pm on November 3rd.
  • Option B: Return the ballot by mail
    • Mail the ballot to your County Board of Elections – the address should already be on the envelope but you can also find your County’s office at
    • Postage is already paid – you do not need a stamp.
    • Ballots must be postmarked by Election Day, Tuesday November 3rd and received no later than Friday, November 6th. It is recommended that you mail your ballot no later than October 15th. 
  • View the PA Department of State Mail-in ballot return guidance to counties here. 


Questions? Call the PA Dems Voter Assistance Hotline at 1-833-PAVOTES.