Voting Updates: Mail-in and Absentee Ballots; Become a Poll Worker; and Election Security
As you prepare to vote in the Nov. 3 elections, here are some important updates. Stay tuned for additional updates as we monitor pending legislation in the PA House and Senate regarding voting in Pennsylvania.
The deadline to register for the November general election is October 19, 2020. Keep in mind that you must submit a voter registration application to update your address, change your party affiliation, or change your name.
If you are a registered voter in Pennsylvania, you have the option to vote by mail-in ballot. You do not have to provide a reason for requesting a mail-in ballot. If you decide to vote by mail-in ballot, keep in mind, you must apply for a ballot by 5:00 p.m. on the Tuesday before the election – October 27th. You can apply using an online application at votesPA.com/ApplyMailBallot, by mailing in a paper application, or by submitting a paper application in person at the county election office.
An absentee ballot may be requested if you plan to be out of the municipality on election day or if you have a disability or illness. An absentee ballot still requires you to list a reason for your ballot. Absentee ballot applications may be accessed here.
Mail-in and absentee ballot applications for the November 3, 2020, general election must be received by your county election office by 5 p.m. on Tuesday, October 27, 2020. All mail-in and absentee ballots for the November general election will be sent to voters with postage-paid envelopes, a change from the 2020 primary election that will eliminate the cost of postage for voters using mail options in November.
Become a Poll Worker
Be a champion of democracy! Become a poll worker in Pennsylvania. Every year elections in Pennsylvania are made possible by thousands of regular citizens who serve as poll workers. These are the civic-minded citizens who manage polling place operations on election day. We depend on these individuals to run fair and secure elections, and the need for new poll workers has never been greater. Many poll workers are older, and thus in a demographic at higher-risk to COVID-19.
If you are interested in becoming a poll worker, fill out the Poll Worker Interest Form. After you submit the form, your county’s election office will contact you. You may reach out to the election office to follow up. You can find the contact information on the Contact Your Election Officials page.
Poll workers generally work all day on Election Day, from before the polls open at 7 a.m. until after the polls close at 8 p.m. In addition, they may be asked to attend a training session before the election. All poll workers are paid for their time on election day.
Election Security in Pennsylvania
As Americans, we all share the magnitude of the importance of defending the integrity and security of our elections, to ensure both our right to vote and our confidence that our vote will be counted accurately. Learn more about Pennsylvania voter election security.