Election season is quickly approaching, and Sailors and their families are reminded that Navy voting assistance officers (VAO) are available to help them with the process of absentee voting during the election season. It's very important for voters to register as an absentee voter with their local election offices early and to receive their absentee ballot in time to vote. Specific information regarding registration and absentee ballot request form deadlines is located online at the Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP) website, http://www.fvap.gov/usm.html under "State by State Instructions." Please visit the website and click on your state to find out about any and all upcoming elections. If you have any questions feel free to contact your VAO or Assistant VAO.
Here are some FAQs
Do I have to be registered to vote absentee?
Registration requirements vary from state to state. Most states and territories require registration to vote absentee. Voter registration and absentee ballot request can be done at the same time by submitting the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA). If you are already registered to vote and only wish to request a ballot, you should submit your FPCA as soon as possible.
Where do I send my Voter Registration/Absentee Ballot Request?
Your Voter Registration/Absentee Ballot request form must be completed, printed, signed, dated and mailed directly to your local election official. These officials will handle the processing and distribution of your absentee ballots and may need to contact you for further information or clarification. To facilitate this process, please provide a current email address, phone and fax number on your application.
We recommend that you register to vote/request an absentee ballot in January of each year, or at least 45 days before Election Day.
For voting purposes, "legal voting residence" can be the state or territory where you last resided prior to entering military service OR the state or territory that you have since claimed as your legal residence. Even though you may no longer maintain formal ties to that residence, the address determines your proper voting jurisdiction. To claim a new legal residence, you must have simultaneous physical presence and the intent to return to that location as your primary residence.
Yes. Eligible spouses and children (U.S. citizens, 18 years or older) of military personnel may vote absentee. Some states allow children of military personnel residing overseas who are U.S. citizens but who have never resided in the U.S. to claim one of their U.S. citizen parent's legal state of residence as their own. Check out our list of states allowing this.