Step by Step: Mail Voting in Arizona

Person wears a red, white and blue mask with a Human Rights Campaign logo that says VOTE underneath it.

Human Rights Campaign has launched a step-by-step mail voting guide for Arizona's voters ahead of Election Day.

Key Deadlines

October 15, 2020 - Voter Registration Deadline*
October 7, 2020
- First day for counties to mail ballots to voters (and first day of in-person early voting)
October 23, 2020
- Last day to request a ballot-by-mail or sign up for PEVL
October 27, 2020
- Recommended deadline to mail back your ballot
November 3, 2020
- Election Day - All ballots must be received by 7:00 p.m.

Drop Off/Mail Instructions: Arizona ballots are POSTAGE PAID. Putting a stamp on your mail-in ballot will delay its delivery. Mail-in ballots can be dropped off at any early voting location in your county of registration OR any polling place on Election Day in your county of registration. All ballots must be received by 7:00 p.m.

* This date was changed by court order as of 10/14/20

VOTING BY MAIL IN ARIZONA

Ballot by mail has been available in Arizona for over two decades and approximately 80% of Arizona voters already choose this method to vote. Importantly, there is a long standing relationship between Arizona election officials and the United States Postal Service for the delivery of official election mail, including ballots. In the August 4th Primary Election, over 1.2 million early ballots were cast (almost 88% of the vote). Arizona is equipped to handle increases in ballot by mail requests for the General Election.

REQUESTING YOUR BALLOT

  1. If you would like to receive your ballot by mail for the November 3rd General Election, make your request now.
  2. Ballots will be mailed out to voters that are on the Permanent Early Voting List or have requested a one time early ballot via first class mail beginning on Wednesday, October 7th.
  3. The deadline to request the county mail you a ballot is October 23rd at 5pm. We recommend making your request as early as possible.
  4. USPS advises: Where voters will both receive and send a ballot by mail, voters should submit their ballot request early enough so that it is received by their election officials at least 15 days before Election Day at a minimum, and preferably long before that time.

RETURNING YOUR BALLOT

  1. Arizona law allows voters options on how to return their voted ballot, outside of mailing it through USPS. You can return your voted ballot by:
    Dropping it off at any voting location in your county or;
    Depositing it in any secured ballot drop box in your county.
    See the Google Map below for a list of all ballot drop boxes in Arizona.
  2. If you wish to return your ballot through USPS, it is recommended that you return it as soon as possible. The latest date recommended to mail back your ballot is Tuesday, October 27th. Postage is prepaid and does not require a stamp.
  3. It is not recommended to use private carriers to return your voted ballot if you are in-state. Voters that are temporarily out of state and not a uniformed or overseas (UOCAVA) voter, should contact their county recorder with questions about using a private carrier to return their voted ballot.
  4. UOCAVA voters have the option to receive and return their voted ballot electronically. Click here for more information.
  5. If you cannot mail your ballot back by October 27th, it is recommended you drop it off at a voting location or ballot drop box.
  6. Track your ballot. Voters can look up the status of their ballot online to confirm if it was received and counted. Maricopa County voters can sign up for text and email notifications.
  7. Ballots are non-forwardable. Voters that will be out of town or away from their residence should contact their county recorder immediately so they can mail their ballot to their temporary mailing address. This is extremely important for voters out of state, including college students, as mail times could be impacted and the voter will need to allow as much time as possible to receive and return their ballot.
  8. ALL VOTED BALLOTS MUST BE RECEIVED NO LATER THAN 7PM ON ELECTION DAY. In Arizona, postmarks are not sufficient. The ballot must be received by the County Elections Officials by 7pm on Election Day, whether it is mailed back or dropped off at a voting location or drop box.

    Please visit the United States Postal Service's newly launched website about election mail to learn more.

ONE-TIME EARLY BALLOT VS. PERMANENT EARLY VOTING LIST

The deadline to request a ballot by mail for the November 3, 2020 General Election is October 23, 2020 at 5:00 p.m.

One Time Early Ballot Request

Voters can choose to request a ballot by mail for the upcoming election only. Some reasons to do this include if you prefer not to visit the polls due to COVID-19 concerns, if you know you won’t be able to vote on Election Day, or if you prefer to have more time with your ballot to study the candidates and issues.

How to Request a One Time Early Ballot

Just contact your county recorder by phone or email, visit their website, or click the button below. You can also request a one time early ballot for both the primary and general elections in the same request.

Permanent Early Voting List

Voters can choose to be placed on the Permanent Early Voting List. This means that the voter does not have to contact their county ahead of every election to request an early ballot. The county will automatically mail the voter an early ballot for every election they are eligible to vote in (See NOTE below for independent voters). A voter can remove themselves from the PEVL list at any time.

How to Sign Up for PEVL

You can sign up for PEVL on servicearizona.com and complete a new voter registration form. You will be asked if you want to join PEVL and your existing voter registration record will be updated.

What’s next after requesting your ballot?

After you have made your request for a ballot by mail, the County Recorder will mail you your ballot. Ballots are mailed beginning 27 days before the election. Start checking your mailbox for your official early ballot during this time period. Remember, if you are an independent voter, you can vote in the August 4th primary. Don’t forget to contact your County Recorder to let them know which party ballot to mail you.

How to vote an early ballot?

Step 1. Request your early ballot (either one time request or sign up for PEVL).
Step 2. Retrieve your ballot from your mailbox.
Step 3. Vote your ballot.
Step 4. Place your voted ballot inside the early ballot affidavit envelope.
Step 5. SIGN the early ballot affidavit envelope. Your ballot will not be counted unless you do this step.
Step 6. Seal your ballot and return it.
Step 7.Verify your ballot was received and counted

HOW TO RETURN AN EARLY BALLOT

By Mail: You should always plan to mail back your ballot at least 7 days prior to election day, to ensure it is received by the county in time. The United States Post Office recommends 7 days for returning ballots by mail, which is first class mail. Postage is pre-paid so all you have to do is drop your signed and sealed ballot envelope in the mail.

Drop it Off: If you don’t have enough time to mail your ballot back or prefer to return it in person, you have several options:

  1. You can drop your ballot off at any in-person early voting locations, including the County Recorder’s Office or Elections Office.
  2. Some counties have secured ballot drop boxes. You can drop your ballot off in any ballot drop box in your county.
  3. You can drop your ballot off at any voting location in your county on Election Day. No need to wait in line. Just head straight inside the voting location and drop it in the early ballot bin. You can get an I Voted sticker too!

WHAT IS A BALLOT DROP BOX?

A ballot drop box is a secured bin provided by County Election Officials where voters can return their voted ballot. They are located in a secure location, such as inside or in front of a federal, state, local, or tribal government building.

NOTICE: Drop boxes are established by the county and are subject to change. These locations are currently being confirmed/updated for the November 3rd General Election.

HOW CAN I CONFIRM MY BALLOT WAS COUNTED?

Voters can verify their ballot was counted at arizona.vote.

Maricopa County voters can sign up for text and email alerts of their ballot status at: https://recorder.maricopa.gov/subscriptions/

Navajo county voters can track their ballot here: https://navajocountyvotes.ballottrax.net/voter/

VOTING EARLY IN PERSON

In-person early voting is available beginning 27 days before every Election Day.

WHEN ARE IN-PERSON EARLY VOTING LOCATIONS AVAILABLE?

In-person early voting locations are available beginning 27 days before the election through the Friday before Election Day. Hours of operation may vary by location. Locations typically include the County Recorder's Office, as well as designated locations across the voter's county.

Voters can find a list of onsite early voting locations by visiting the Arizona Clean Elections election detail page.

ID is required if you vote early in person, or at a polling place or voting center on Election Day.

VOTING ON ELECTION DAY

Click here for more information on voting at your polling place on Election Day. Polling places are assigned voting locations, open on Election Day, where voters can receive and cast their official ballot. Voters can drop off their mail-in ballots at these locations until 7pm on Election Day.

Click here for more information on voting at a Vote Center on Election Day. Vote Centers are voting locations open on Election Day to every eligible voter in the county. Voters can visit any vote center in their county and receive and cast their official ballot. Voters can drop off their mail-in ballots at these locations until 7pm on Election Day.

Click here for a list of acceptable identification at the polls by taking the Arizona Clean Elections “What ID Do I Need to Vote Quiz.”

Topics:
Elections

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