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Secretary of State Issues New Guidance on Absentee Voting for November 3 General Election


Monday, July 20, 2020 – MONTGOMERY – Ahead of the November 3 General Election, Secretary of State John H. Merrill has once again extended the opportunity for anyone concerned about COVID-19 to apply for and cast an absentee ballot.

“Amid coronavirus concerns, it is important to remember that Alabamians who are concerned about contracting or spreading an illness have the opportunity to avoid the polls on Election Day by casting an absentee ballot,” shared Secretary Merrill. “Alabamians can access the application online or by visiting or calling their local Absentee Election Manager’s office.”

Voters are also able to contact the Secretary of State’s Office at (334) 242-7210 to request an absentee ballot application.

Any qualified voter who determines it is impossible or unreasonable to vote at their polling place shall be eligible to check the box on the absentee ballot application that is most applicable to that individual. State law allows the Secretary of State to issue absentee voting guidance during declared states of emergency, allowing Secretary Merrill to encourage voters to check the box which reads as follows (in the case none of the boxes are appropriate):

“I have a physical illness or infirmity which prevents my attendance at the polls. [ID REQUIRED]”

For the November 3 General Election, the deadline to register to vote is Monday, October 19, the deadline to submit an absentee ballot application is Thursday, October 29, the deadline to return an absentee ballot to the Absentee Election Manager is the close of business Monday, November 2, and the last day to postmark an absentee ballot is Monday, November 2.

Voters who are eligible to vote pursuant to the Uniformed and Overseas Absentee Voting Act will have until Tuesday, November 3 to postmark an absentee ballot.

The option to vote in-person on Election Day will still be available for any voter who prefers to do so. Polling places will once again be equipped with personal protective equipment, sanitation supplies, and more based on the determination of the county.