Absentee Voting




Because of concerns about COVID-19, absentee voting may be the preferred method for many voters this fall. We suggest you request your absentee ballot now if you plan on voting using that method. Even if you receive an absentee ballot you can decide to not vote that way and still vote in person (you can’t do both!)

Requesting a ballot.

  • No particular reason is needed to request a mail-in ballot.
  • To request an absentee ballot, use this form. If you don’t have a printer, contact the Chatham County Board of Elections and request that you be mailed a request form. Their phone number is (919) 545-8500.
  • You will need to provide your full legal name, date of birth, either your North Carolina Drivers License number or the last four digits of your social security number. You also will need to provide your current residential address and an email or phone number.
  • A near relative or verifiable legal guardian may assist in requesting an absentee ballot. There are also other special cases of how to get assistance, which are listed on the form.
  • You or your near relative / legal guardian must sign the form. The request form must be delivered or mailed to the Chatham County Board of elections no later than 5:00 PM on Tuesday, October 27 2020. It cannot be faxed or emailed. 

Chatham County Board of Elections
PO Box 111
Pittsboro, NC 27312

  • Note that NO ONE other than the voter or near relative or legal guardian may possess or return a completed absentee request form.

To find out if your request has been processed

How to vote your absentee ballot

Prohibited Witnesses

  • The following individuals are prohibited from serving as a witness on an absentee ballot:
    • A person who is under 18
    • An individual who is a candidate for nomination or election to such office, unless the voter is the candidate’s near relative
  • Additionally, if the voter is a patient or resident of a hospital, clinic, nursing home, or rest home, the following people are also prohibited from serving as a witness on the absentee ballot:
    • An owner, manager, director, employee of the hospital, clinic, nursing home, or rest home in which the voter is a patient or resident
    • An individual who holds any elective office under the United States, this State, or any political subdivision of this State
    • An individual who holds any office in a State, congressional district, county, or precinct political party or organization, or who is a campaign manager or treasurer for any candidate or political party; provided that a delegate to a convention shall not be considered a party office.

Certification of Witnesses and Assistants

  • The voter’s two witnesses must, after observing that the voter marking the ballot, complete and sign the envelope in the space designated as Witnesses’ Certification.
  • If a voter used the services of a Notary Public as a sole witness, the notary will sign the Notary-Witness Certification.
    • A notary is not permitted to charge a fee for witnessing an absentee ballot. G.S. § 10B-30.
  • Any person who assisted the voter must sign and date the certificate in the proper place on the envelope.

After Marking the Absentee Ballot

  • Once the ballot is marked, the voter or a person assisting the voter must:
    1. seal the ballot and document in the container-return envelope and
    2. complete the Absentee Application and Certificate on the ballot container-return envelope.

Returning the Voted Ballot

  • Once the Absentee Application and Certificate is fully executed with all relevant signatures, the voted ballot (placed inside the container-return envelope) must be returned to the county board of elections no later than 5:00 PM on Election Day.
  • Absentee ballots received after 5:00 PM on Election Day will be timely only if they are received by mail no later than 5:00 PM on the third day following the date of the election, and bear a postmark that is dated on or before Election Day.
  • The envelope may be mailed or delivered in person to either the county board of elections office or to an open one-stop absentee voting site during the early voting period.

Only the voter or the voter’s near relative may take possession of the absentee ballot for purpose

Further information

How to vote absentee by mail




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  • Terry Schmidt
    published this page in 2020 Elections 2020-06-15 14:09:54 -0400