Any registered voter in North Carolina who is qualified to vote in an election can either request and receive a mail-in absentee ballot or vote during One-Stop for any election, whether it is a statewide primary, general election, or special election on constitutional amendments, referendum or bond proposals, or any municipal election in which absentee voting is allowed. No special circumstance or excuse is needed to receive and vote a mail-in absentee ballot.
A person must be a registered voter in their North Carolina County of residence in order to request an absentee ballot. If not registered to vote in the proper county, a person must submit a voter registration application along with the State Absentee Ballot Request Form. The deadline to register to vote is 25 days prior to the date of the election.
The voter’s full name, residential address, date of birth and an identification number must be provided on this form. This information will be used to confirm your voter registration. In addition, this form must be signed by the voter or the voter’s near relative or qualified legal guardian. The absentee ballot request form may also serve as a voter change form; however, changes in voter registration may only be made by the voter.
Either the voter or the voter’s near relative or qualified legal guardian may request an absentee ballot. A “near relative” is defined as the voter’s spouse, brother, sister, parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, mother-in-law, father-in-law, daughter-in-law, son-in-law, stepparent, or stepchild.
If a registered voter is a patient in any hospital, clinic, nursing home or rest home, it is unlawful for any owner, manager, director, employee, or other person, other than the voter’s near relative or verifiable legal guardian, to request an absentee ballot on behalf of the voter.
If the voter’s NC driver license number, NC DMV-issued identification card number, or last four digits of social security number is not provided, a copy of one of the following must be provided along with the request form:
Submit this form to the New Hanover County Board of Elections no later than 5:00 pm on the Tuesday before the date of the election.
Address: 230 Government Center Drive Suite 38 Wilmington, NC 28403
Visit www.ncsbe.gov to check the status of your absentee request.
Some citizens, such as people serving in the military who are away from their permanent home on Election Day, their families, or U.S. citizens who are living abroad, have special voting rights and ways to register to vote. These people have the choice of either requesting a mail-in absentee ballot the same way as other registered voters, or they can apply to register and/or vote through special programs for military and overseas voters as described below.
The Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) is a federal law that requires states to allow certain voters who are absent from their county of residence to have special rights that provide an expedited means for them to register and vote by mail-in absentee ballot. In order to qualify under the provisions of UOCAVA in this state, a voter must be a legal resident of North Carolina. Citizens covered by UOCAVA include:
UOCAVA voters may use the following forms to register and/or request an absentee ballot:
A military-overseas voter need only apply for an absentee ballot by one method; either the FPCA or the FWAB, but not both. Generally speaking, the FWAB serves as a backup to the FPCA. For most voters the FPCA is the best option. FWAB users will need to reference the UOCAVA Election Notice for a list of candidates running.
Previously registered UOCAVA voters may also use the State Absentee Ballot Request Form to request an absentee ballot.
For more information on absentee voting for UOCAVA voters, click here .
A Multipartisan Assistance Team, or “MAT” is a group of voters who have been appointed by the local County Board of Elections to provide assistance with absentee-by-mail voting to voters living at assisted-living facilities. The makeup of the team includes, at minimum, voters whose voter registration is affiliated with two different political parties (or, in the alternative, those who were unanimously appointed by a bipartisan County Board of Elections).
MATs offer two major services:
If you are a voter living in a facility and would like to schedule a MAT visit, contact the activity coordinator of your facility. If you do not know who the activity coordinator is, or if there is no activity coordinator, talk to staff or management at your facility.
If you are the representative from a facility that would like to request the services of a MAT team, please click here to schedule a visit. Once the request has been submitted, a New Hanover County Board of Elections representative will be in touch.