Military and Overseas Citizens Voting
Webpage last updated: July 8, 2022
The following information applies only if you are:
- a United States uniformed services member on active duty, or a Merchant Marine member,
- a spouse or dependent of the above, or
- a United States citizen residing outside of the United States.
This category of voters are referred to as UOCAVA voters based on Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act. As of 2016, the term “vote-by-mail ballot” is used instead of “absentee ballot.”
Registration and Vote-by-Mail Ballot Request
In addition to registering online or using another acceptable form, you may register to vote using the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA). The FPCA (Online Assistant or PDF form) is available through the Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP). Refer to FVAP.gov/Florida for Florida specific guidance.
The FPCA can also be used to request a vote-by-mail ballot at the same time. You may also call, mail, fax, or email your County Supervisor of Elections to ask for a voter registration application or a vote-by-mail ballot. Unless you specify otherwise, your request for vote-by-mail ballot is valid for all elections through the end of the calendar year of the next regularly scheduled general election.
Mail and Track Vote-by-Mail Ballots
Supervisors of Elections must send vote-by-mail ballots to absent stateside and overseas military, and overseas citizens no later than 45 days before each election. The blank ballot may be mailed, emailed or faxed to you according to your request. If you want your ballot emailed and you provide an email address to the Supervisor, you will be notified that your request was received, the estimated date your ballot will be sent, and when your voted ballot is received in the office. To track your vote-by-mail ballot request and ballot online, use your County Supervisor of Elections website or access the county-specific link on our webpage Ballot Information and Status Lookup.
If Election Day is approaching and you still have not received your requested vote-by-mail ballot, immediately contact your County Supervisor of Elections. You may also use the Official Back-up Ballot known as the Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB). The FWAB (Online Assistant or PDF form) is also available through the Federal Voting Assistance Program. The FWAB can be used to vote in any federal, state or local election. (See section 101.6952, Florida Statutes)
Return of Voted Vote-by-Mail Ballot
A voted vote-by-mail ballot must be returned by mail, in person or through someone else on behalf of the voter so that it is received by the Supervisor of Elections no later than 7 p.m. (local time) on Election Day in the county in which the voter is registered. The Federal Voting Assistance Program provides specific recommended return timelines (see timetables at the bottom of their website) for absent military and overseas voters.
Overseas (military and civilian) voters only:
- An overseas voter has the option to return the ballot and signed Voter's Certificate by fax. The ballot and certificate must be faxed directly to the fax number provided by the Supervisor of Elections or to a fax number provided by Federal Voting Assistance Program of the Department of Defense. For further information, please contact your local County Supervisor of Elections Office.
- An overseas voter has 10 extra days from election day for a vote-by-mail ballot to be received. This 10-day extension only applies in presidential preference primary elections, general elections, and special elections and special primary elections (by operation of section 100.191, Florida Statutes). The overseas voter’s vote-by-mail ballot must be postmarked or dated by Election Day and received within 10 days of the election in order to be counted, provided the ballot is otherwise proper.
Further information specific to military and overseas voters is available at: https://www.fvap.gov including, but not limited to:
- FVAP Voting Assistance Guide (update in progress for 2022 Election Cycle)
- Residency for military voters (Updated 5/2020)
- Residency for overseas voters (Updated 5/2020)