Absentee voting before or on Election Day

Absentee voting begins 35 days before primary and general elections and -- except for voters hospitalized due to emergencies, discussed below under "Absentee Deadlines," -- ends the day before the election. (Note: Absentee voting does not always begin 35 days before a special election. You may contact your county board of elections to learn if a special election is being held in your precinct and, if so, when absentee ballots will be available.)

Once absentee ballots are available for voting, an absentee voter may receive and return the ballot in person at the county board of elections office, or receive and return the absentee ballot by U.S. Mail.

Am I eligible to vote by absentee ballot?

Any qualified Ohio voter may request an absentee ballot without stating a reason. The ballot must be applied for in writing. If you are properly registered to vote, you must submit your written request to the board of elections of the county in which your voting residence is located. Your request must contain certain information (discussed below) and your original signature. You may, but are not required to, use the application form provided in Forms & Publications.

How do I apply for an absentee ballot?

Regular absentee voters (other than military, overseas or provisional voters)

Your written application for the absentee ballot need not be in any particular form, but it must contain all of the following information:

1. Your name;

2. Your signature;

3. The address at which you are registered to vote;

4. Your date of birth;

5. One of the following:

* Your Ohio driver's license number; or

* The last four digits of your Social Security number; or

* A copy of the your current and valid photo identification, military identification, current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document that shows your name and current address. (Note: You cannot use as proof of identification a notice that the board of elections mailed to you.)

6. A statement identifying the election for which you are requesting an absentee voter's ballot;

7. A statement that you are a qualified elector;

8. If the request is for a partisan primary election ballot, your political party affiliation; and

9. If you want the ballots to be mailed, the address to which you want them mailed.

Election Day

Polls are open from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

A current and valid photo identification (i.e. Ohio driver's license, state ID card, government ID). Photo identification must show name and address (does not need to be current address for driver's license or state id card); or A military identification that shows the voter's name. (Does not need to show address); or A copy of a current utility bill (including cell phone bill), bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other government document that shows the voter's name and current address (including from a public college or university).


Ohio law provides you cannot use as proof of identification a notice that the board of elections mailed to you. Voters who do not provide one of these documents will still be able to vote by provisional ballot.