Military, Overseas, Absentee
Military and overseas voters may now choose to receive their ballots for Federal offices either electronically or by regular U.S. mail. Please click here for more information.
Please visit our online Military & Overseas Voting Services website,
http://alabama.overseasvotefoundation.org, where you can register to vote,
apply for an absentee ballot, and get answers to frequently asked voting
Military and other
overseas citizens are welcome to use the standard procedure for absentee voting
by mail. However, there are also special provisions for members of the U.S.
Armed Forces and merchant marine, commissioned corps of the Public Health
Service and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, along with family
members of all these groups, and other citizens who reside outside the United
States. Check the Federal Voting Assistance Program,
elections, absentee ballot applications and completed absentee ballots should be
hand delivered or mailed to the Absentee Election Manager for your county. You may find the
address for your county's Absentee Election Manager here.
In order to vote in Alabama, you must meet the
- You must be a United States Citizen
- You must reside in Alabama (or you must have
maintained Alabama as your legal residence)
- You must be at least 18 years old
- You must not have been convicted of a felony
(unless your voting rights have been restored)
- You must not have been legally declared
"mentally incompetent" by a court (unless your
rights have been restored)
WHEN: You may apply for voter registration
on the same day you move into Alabama, if you decide to
make this your legal residence. If you are an Alabama
resident stationed away from home, you should begin the
voter registration process as soon as possible in the
election year in order for the application to go through
the mail and processing system with extra time for
correcting any errors or omissions.
Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) is the primary
form to use, either to register to vote or to request an
absentee ballot. Servicemen and women and their families
may obtain the FPCA from the Alabama Secretary of State
www.sos.alabama.gov or by calling toll-free
1-800-274-VOTE (8683). The Federal website is
www.fvap.gov and the toll-free number is DSN
425-1584. You may also contact your County Board of
WHERE: In addition of the Secretary of
State's office, the following locations provide voter
- Armed forces recruiting stations
- Department of Human Resources
- State and local government offices when applying
for Rehabilitation Services, Aid to Dependent
Children, WIC, Medicaid, or Food Stamps
- Offices of Probate Judges and License
- Public libraries, colleges, and universities
The Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) is the
primary form for obtaining an absentee ballot. Request
the FPCA as early as possible from any of the sources
listed above. One FPCA will suffice for both primary and
general election ballots in federal elections. When you
receive your absentee ballot, cast your vote(s) and
return the ballot without delay.
The Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB) is a
back-up ballot that can be used by Uniformed Services
members on active duty, members of the merchant marine,
and their spouses or dependents under the Uniform and
Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act, which applies to
general elections for Federal offices. You can use this
FWAB whether you are located inside or outside the
United States (including APO and FPO addresses),
provided that you are away from your voting residence
for service-related activities. You must apply for a
regular ballot early enough for your local election
officials to receive the request at least 5 DAYS before
the election. Then if you do not receive your regular ballot in
time, you may use the FWAB. Your FWAB must be postmarked no later than
Election Day and received by your local voting official in
Alabama no later than noon on the seventh day after Election Day.
Your Unit Voting Assistance Officer can assist you
with this and other voting procedures or problems.
- Request your absentee ballot as EARLY as
possible, no later than the first week of September.
However, election officials must receive your FPCA at least
5 days before Election Day.
- Make sure your local election officials have
your current mailing address.
- Fill in all the information completely and take
care to assure that it will be easy to read.
- Sign and date all election materials.
- Have the proper witnesses sign the affidavit on
the outside of the absentee ballot return envelope.
Q. When must my voted ballot be received in order to be counted?
A. Under a new law passed in 2014, the deadline for receipt of UOCAVA ballots
for the primary, primary runoff, and general elections is noon on the 7th day following the
election, where such UOCAVA ballots are postmarked by the day of the primary, primary runoff,
or general election.
Q. How can I get help if I have questions about the voting process?
A. Contact your Unit Voting Assistance Officer. If you have access to a
the Elections Division of the Alabama Secretary of State. You may also log on to the website
of the Federal Voting Assistance Program (at www.fvap.gov), which provides
information for servicemen and women overseas. The FVAP also helps all military personnel
with access to a DSN phone. Dial toll-free DSN 425-1584.
Q. Most of the instructions refer to my legal voting residence and my county of residence.
As a member of the armed forces who has been transferred, what is my official residence?
A. For voting purposes, your residence can be either the place you last
resided before entering service, or it can be your new legal residence. Military
and family members may change their legal residence each time they change
permanent duty stations, or they may choose to retain their original residence.
Consult a legal officer before changing residence, because other factors besides
voting must be considered.
Q. I know the city that is considered my residence, but what if I don't know the
name of the county?
A. The Alabama Secretary of State website has a
City/County Inquiry page which allows citizens to find their county by choosing their
city name. You may also call the office of the Alabama Secretary of State toll-free at
Q. Must I have my ballot notarized or witnessed?
A. The absentee ballot's outside return envelope has an affidavit that must
be sworn to before two witnesses (at least 18 years old). Notarization is not required.
Q. Do I have to pay postage to vote?
A. In general, all election-related materials for servicemen and women can
be mailed postage-free from any APO or FPO mail facility, from all U.S. embassies and
consulates, and from any post office in the United States. You must pay postage if the
materials are mailed from a non-U.S. postal facility. If you download the absentee application
form, you must put it in an envelope and pay postage.
Q. What are the instructions for members of my family who are stationed
A. Family members follow the same procedures as military personnel.