Absentee Ballot Information
Download / view the Absentee Ballot Application Form from the NYS Board of Election's website.
Absentee Web Portal
Absentee Ballot Information for Disabled Voters
Get the New York Accessible Electronic Absentee Ballot Application from the NYS Board of Elections. Learn more about the Accessible Absentee Ballot for New York State (updated Sept. 1, 2020).
If you are in the Military and need an absentee ballot application please go to the Federal Voting Assistance Program website
Who is eligible for an absentee ballot?
Any registered voter who wishes to avoid voting in person because of COVID-19 concerns. You can select the temporary illness portion of the absentee ballot application for the November 3, 2020 General Election to receive an absentee ballot in the mail.
Any registered voter who: will be out of their county of residence on any primary, special or general election; is temporarily ill or disabled; has duties related to primary care of one or more individuals who are ill or physically disabled, or is detained in jail awaiting grand jury action or confined in prison after conviction for an offense other than a felony may apply for an absentee ballot.
Anyone who is permanently ill or disabled may apply for a permanent absentee ballot. The Board of Elections will investigate the facts given and, if satisfied, will mark the voter's record "Permanently Disabled". A ballot will automatically be mailed for each election thereafter in which the voter is qualified to vote.
In New York State you may not vote in a primary election unless you are enrolled in a political party holding a primary. In this case, an absentee ballot would not be issued to anyone not enrolled in a party. If you have questions regarding your enrollment please contact the Board of Elections.
How does an absentee ballot work?
An absentee ballot is a paper ballot which looks exactly like the ballot in the voting machine. In this manner, your vote remains secret.
Keep in mind that unless the oath is signed and the ballot is enclosed in the secrecy envelope, your ballot will not be counted.
This ballot, if mailed must be postmarked no later than election day, November 3, 2020. Or if personally delivered, must be received by the Board of Elections no later than the close of polls on election day -- 9:00 PM.
How do I apply for an absentee ballot?
You may request an absentee ballot by submitting a completed application in the mail/email, through an email that includes your name, address you are registered at and the address where you wish to receive your ballot, by faxing an application to (716)938-2775 or by using a web portal (which is currently under construction and should be available by August 26th)
You may also apply in person at the Board of Elections, or have someone pick up the application for you or print out a copy above.
Absentee ballots must be postmarked by November 3, 2020 (received no later than November 10, 2020) or dropped off at the Board of Elections office, at one of our Early Voting sites or at any of Cattaraugus County's 52 polling sites on November 3, 2020.
What if I have no absentee ballot application available?
Absentee ballots may also be requested by a letter which must be received by the Board of Elections no later than seven days before the election. This letter must contain:
- the address where you are registered,
- the address to which you want the ballot mailed,
- the reason for the request,
- dates in which you are out of the county
An absentee ballot will be mailed to you beginning September 18, 2020.
Remember, unless you are eligible for a permanent absentee ballot or will be continuously absent between the dates of the primary and general election, you must file an application for each election.
When do I apply for an absentee ballot?
You may request an absentee ballot application at any time.
If you mail your application, you must postmark it no later than seven days before the election for which you are requesting the absentee ballot. If application in person (or someone you have designated is delivering it for you) you may do so up until close of business on the day before the election. The Board of Elections urges you to apply as early as possible to avoid delays.
Notes for the absentee voter:
- Apply for your absentee ballot as soon as you know you will need it.
- Once the ballots are printed, you can apply for, receive, and cast your ballot all in one trip to the County Board of Elections (call your County Board for this information.)
Make sure your vote counts!
These notices explain how to make sure your vote counts and how to avoid over votes (filling in too many ovals) and double votes (voting more than once for the same candidate). Read the Notice concerning overvotes and double votes.
More information on Absentee Ballots and associated forms
- New York State Board of Elections: Absentee Voting
- Federal Voting Assistance Program: Voting Help for Uniformed Service Members, their families & Citizens living outside the U.S.