VOPP: Table 11: Receipt and Postmark Deadlines for Absentee Ballots

6/15/2020

This table is part of NCSL’s Voting Outside the Polling Place report.

The most common state deadline for election officials to receive absentee or mail ballots is on Election Day when the polls close. Some states, however, accept and count a mailed ballot if it is received after Election Day but postmarked prior to the election.

What constitutes a postmark is changing. Because less mail gets truly postmarked, many states are accepting an Intelligent Mail barcode (IMb) as evidence.

Note: This table does not include the receipt and postmark deadlines for voters subject to the Uniform and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act, which may differ from the deadlines for domestic absentee voters. 

State and Citation Deadline by Which Election Officials Must Receive Absentee/Mailed Ballots Does the State Accept Postmarked Ballots that Arrive After Election Day?

Alabama

Ala. Code § 17-11-18
Election Day (by noon) and postmarked by the day before the election. No

Alaska

AS § 15.20.081(e) and (h)
Election Day or 10 days after the election if postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

Arizona

A.R.S. 16-547
Election Day (by 7 p.m.) No

Arkansas

A.C.A. § 7-5-411
Election Day (by 7:30 p.m.) for mailed ballots or close of business the day before the election for hand-delivered ballots. No

California

West's Ann. Cal. Elect. Code § 3020
Election Day (before polls close) or three days after the election if postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

Colorado

C.R.S. § 1-7.5-107
Election Day (by 7 p.m.) No

Connecticut

Conn. Gen. Stat. 45-9-140b
Election Day (before polls close) No

Delaware

Del. Code Ann. § 15-55-5508
Election Day (before polls close) No

District of Columbia

DC ST § 1-1001.05(a)(10A)
Seven days after the election if postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

Florida

West's F.S.A. §101.67
Election Day (by 7 p.m.) Yes

Georgia

GA Code Ann. 183-1-14

Election Day (before polls close)

No

Hawaii

Act 136, SLH 2019
Election Day (before polls close) No

Idaho

Idaho Code 10-34-1005
Election Day (by 8 p.m.) No

Illinois

10 ILCS 5/19-8, 10 ILCS 5/18A-15
Fourteen days after the election if postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

Indiana

IC 3-12-1-17
Election Day No

Iowa

Iowa Code § 53.17(2)
Election Day (before polls close) or noon the Monday following the election if postmarked by the day before the election. Yes (must be postmarked the day before the election)

Kansas

K.S.A. 25-1132
Three days after the election if postmarked before the close of polls on Election Day. Yes

Kentucky

Ky. Rev. Stat. 117.086
Election Day (before polls close) No

Louisiana

LSA-R.S. 18:1311
The day before the election. No

Maine

Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. 21-A § 755
Election Day (before polls close) No

Maryland

MD Code, Election Law, § 9-505
Postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

Massachusetts

Mass. Gen. Laws Ann. Section 95
Election Day (before polls close) No

Michigan

Mich. Comp. Laws 168.764a
Election Day (before polls close) No

Minnesota

Minn. Stat. 203B.08
Election Day (before polls close) for mailed/absentee ballots or 3 p.m. on Election Day for hand-delivered ballots. No

Mississippi

Miss. Code Ann. § 23-15-637
The day before the election. No

Missouri

Mo. Rev. Stat. 115.293
Election Day (before polls close) No

Montana

Mont. Code Ann. 13-13-232

Election Day (before polls close) No

Nebraska

Nebraska Revised Statute 32-950
Election Day (before polls close) No

Nevada

NV Rev Stat § 293.317
Election Day (before polls close) No

New Hampshire

NH Rev Stat § 657:22

Election Day (by 5 p.m.)

No

New Jersey

N.J.S.A. 19:63-22
Forty-eight hours after polls close if postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

New Mexico

N.M. Stat. Ann. 1-6-10(B)

Election Day (by 7 p.m.)

No

New York

McKinney's Election Law § 8-412
Election Day (before polls close) for hand-delivered ballots or seven days after the election for mailed ballots postmarked the day before Election Day. Yes (must be postmarked the day before the election)

North Carolina

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 163A-1310
Three days after the election if postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

North Dakota

NDCC 16.1-07-09
The day before the election. Before the canvass if postmarked the day before the election. Yes (must be postmarked the day before the election)

Ohio

R.C. § 3509.05
Ten days after the election if postmarked by the day before Election Day. Yes (must be postmarked the day before the election)

Oklahoma

26 OK Stat § 26-14-104

Election Day (by 7 p.m.)

No

Oregon

Or. Rev. Stat. §253.070

Election Day (by 8 p.m.)

No

Pennsylvania

25 P.S. § 3146.8
Election Day (by 8 p.m.) No

Rhode Island

RI Gen L § 17-20-8

Election Day (by 9 p.m.)

No

South Carolina

SC Code § 7-15-420

Election Day (before polls close)

No

South Dakota

S.D. Codified Laws Ann. 12-19-12

Election Day (before polls close)

No

Tennessee

Tenn. Code Ann. 2-6-304

Election Day (before polls close)

No

Texas

Texas Election Code § 86.007
The day after the election by 5 p.m. if postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

Utah

Utah Code Ann. § 20A-3-306, § 20A-4-301
Seven to 14 days after the election (by the county canvass date) if postmarked the day before the election. Yes (must be postmarked the day before the election)

Vermont

Vermont Statutes Title 17. Elections, § 2543

Three days after the election (by noon) if postmarked on or before Election Day.

No

Virginia

Va. Code 24.2-709
Election Day (before polls close) No

Washington

West's RCWA 29A.40.091
Postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

West Virginia

W. Va. Code, § 3-3-5, § 3-5-17
Five days after the election if postmarked on or before Election Day. Yes

Wisconsin

Wis. Stat. 6.87(6)

Election Day (by 8 p.m.)

No

Wyoming

Wyo. Stat. 22-9-119

Election Day (before polls close)

No