Absentee Voting

You are never mailed a ballot without first requesting one.

  • In vote by mail counties, voting age residents are mailed an absentee ballot application by their county auditor.

  • In all other counties, a voter must request an absentee ballot application from the county auditor.



Vote by Mail Counties

All North Dakota counties have polling locations open on Election Day. Some counties are vote by mail counties which means the county mails absentee ballot applications to voting age residents. Residents may then choose whether they will:

  1. Fill out and return the absentee ballot application to request their absentee ballot by mail. (OR)
  2. Vote in person on Election Day or at an early voting location.

Voters are never mailed a ballot without first requesting one through an absentee ballot application. In counties that are not vote by mail, a request must be made to the county auditor to receive an absentee ballot application.

Request an Absentee Ballot & Ballot Tracking

You can request an application for an absentee ballot using the button below. You must print, sign and deliver the absentee application to the appropriate election official. If you submit an application requesting an absentee ballot, you may receive and return your ballot by mail. 

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Steps for Voting Absentee

The steps of voting by absentee are: 

  1. Simply answer the questions provided and print out the form generated.
  2. Sign and date the form and send to your county auditor or appropriate election official at the address given. If needed, include a copy of the qualifying supplemental documentation verifying your new residential address or the alternative ID for voting provided by a tribal government in North Dakota.
  3. Your identification will be verified and your ballot will be sent to you. Mark the ballot with your choices and return it to the county auditor no later than the day before the Election Day. 

Absentee ballots must be postmarked or dropped off in person by the day before the Election Day to be counted.

Helpful hints for absentee ballots:

  • Absentee ballot applications require voters to provide their valid ID information that can be verified against the voter record.
  • Signatures from the absentee ballot application are compared to the signature on the returned ballot envelope. Be sure to sign only your own absentee ballot return envelope. 
  • Absentee ballots can be tracked by the voter. Track your absentee ballot.
  • Returned ballots are officially cast and the voter record is updated to show you have voted. There are a number of ways to return your absentee ballot which are outlined in Returning You Absentee Ballot below.


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Returning Your Absentee Ballot

Returning Your Absentee Ballot

Absentee ballots must be returned prior to Election Day to be counted. There are several ways you can return your absentee ballot: 

Drop In-Person 

You may hand deliver your absentee ballot to the county auditor or appropriate election official by 5:00 pm local time the day prior to Election Day. Find address information for your county courthouse at My Voting Information Portal

Secure Drop Boxes 

Strategically placed secure absentee ballot drop-boxes are provided in each county for voters who wish to deliver their absentee ballot directly to the county. Ballots must be placed in the dropbox by 5:00 pm local time the day prior to Election Day. To check if your county has a drop-box available visit County Drop Boxes. 

Return by Mail 

Absentee ballots can also be returned by U.S. mail or dropped in any U.S. Postal Service public mailbox. Ballots must be postmarked by the day prior to Election Day. Postage is required to be paid by the voter.