Table 15: States With Signature Cure Processes

1/18/2022

Our organization does not run elections and cannot provide legal advice. If you are a voter looking for assistance, please contact your local election official. You can find your local election official's website and contact information by using this database from the US Vote Foundation.

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

It is not uncommon for an absentee/mail ballot to be returned in an envelope that has a problem, such as a missing signature or a signature that doesn’t match the one in the voter's record.

Some states have a process in statute for voters to “cure” these mistakes in time for the ballot to be counted. These states notify voters that there was a problem and then provide the voters with a process and time frame to verify that the ballot is indeed theirs. In states that do not have such a process, ballots with missing or mismatched signatures on the envelope are not counted.

Twenty-four states require election officials to notify voters when there is a missing signature or a signature discrepancy—and require that voters must be given an opportunity to correct it. Details are provided in the table below.

State Notification Process Correction Process

Arizona

Ariz. Rev. Stat. §16-550
Election officials shall make reasonable efforts to contact the voter, advise the voter of the inconsistent signature, and allow the voter to correct or the county to confirm the inconsistent signature. Voters have until the fifth business day after an election to correct a signature.

California

CA Elect Code § 3019
Voters of ballots with mismatching signatures are notified a minimum of eight days prior to certification of the election. Voters have until 5 p.m. two days prior to certification of the election to provide a signature verification statement in person. If a voter fails to sign the absentee ballot envelope, they have until 5 p.m. on the eighth day after the election to submit an unsigned ballot statement.

Colorado

Colo. Rev. Stat. §1-7.5-107.3
Voters of ballots with missing/mismatching signatures are notified by mail within three days (or within two days after the election) of any discrepancy. A confirmation form accompanying the letter must be returned to the county clerk and recorder within eight days after Election Day to count.

Florida

Flor. Stat. § 101.68
County election supervisors shall notify any voter whose signature is missing or doesn’t match records. Voters may cure ballots until 5 p.m. on the second day after the election.

Georgia

Georgia Code § 21-2-386
If ballot is rejected, the voter is promptly notified of rejection.

The voter then has until 3 days after the election to submit voter ID in conjunction with an affidavit confirming the ballot was in fact theirs in order to cure the ballot.

Hawaii

Haw. Rev. Stat. § 11-106
Local election officials shall make an attempt to notify the voter by first-class mail, telephone or electronic mail to inform the voter of the procedure to correct the deficiency. The voter shall have five business days after the date of the election to cure the deficiency.

Illinois

10 ILCS 5/19-8
Voters are notified by mail of rejected ballot within two days of rejection. Voters have until 14 days after election to resolve issue with county election authority.

Indiana

IC 3-11.5-4-13.5
The county election board shall send a notice to the voter by mail to the voter’s address not later than the close of two business days after the signature mismatch determination. The board shall also send an email or call the voter by telephone if such information is available. Voters have until noon eight days after Election Day to cure a signature.

Iowa

Iowa Code § 53.18(2)
If a ballot affidavit is incomplete or absent, the commissioner must notify the voter within 24 hours. A voter may vote a replacement ballot until the day before the election or vote at the voter’s precinct polling place.

Kentucky

KRS § 117.087
Election officials shall make a reasonable effort to contact the voter and provide notice to the voter with a timeframe and manner in which the voter may cure his or her signature. Voters have until the close of polls on Election Day to cure a signature.

Massachusetts

Mass. Gen. Laws ch 54 § 94)
Prior to Election Day, the voter is notified and, if sufficient time allows, sent a new ballot if an affidavit signature is absent or the ballot is rejected for other reasons. Voter can submit a new absentee ballot.

Minnesota

Minn. Stat. § 203B.121
If a ballot is rejected more than five days before Election Day a replacement ballot is mailed; if rejected within five days, election officials must contact the voter via telephone or email to provide options for voting a replacement ballot. Voter can request a replacement absentee ballot.

Montana

Mont. Code § 13-13-241; § 13-13-245
Election administrators shall notify voters of missing or mismatched signatures. Voters have until 8 p.m. on Election Day to cure their ballot.

Nevada

Nev. Rev. Stat. 293.325
Local election officials shall notify voters of missing or mismatched signatures. Voters have until the seventh day after the election to resolve the issue.

New Jersey

N.J.S.A. 19:63-17

Within 24 hours after a ballot is rejected, county board of election must issue a cure letter informing voter of the rejection. The voter may cure the deficiency by completing a cure form and returning to county board of election not later than 48 hours prior to final certification of election results.

New York

McKinney's Election Law § 9-209
Within one day of determining a ballot insufficient, election officials shall send to the voter’s address a notice explaining the reason for such rejection and the procedure to cure the rejection. The board shall also contact the voter by email or telephone if such information is available. Voters have until the seventh business day after the board’s mailing or the day before the election, whichever is later, to correct a signature.

Ohio

Ohio Rev Code § 3509.06
Notice is mailed to voters whose ballots were rejected. Voters have until the seventh day after the election to resolve issue.

Oregon

Ore. Rev. Stat. § 254.431
County clerks notify voters by mail of any signature absence or discrepancy. Voters must complete and return the certified statement accompanying the notice by the 14th day after the election for their ballot to count.

Rhode Island

RI Gen L § 17-20-26 ;        

410-RICR-20-00-23

Local board of canvassers is responsible for notifying voters by mail, email or phone. Voters have until seven days after Election Day to correct a deficiency.

Texas

V.T.C.A., Election Code § 87.0411
No later than the second business day after an early voting ballot board discovers a defect, the board shall determine if it’s possible for the voter to correct the defect and return the envelope before the polls close on Election Day. If the board determines it’s possible, the board shall return the envelope to the voter by mail. If the board determines that it would not be possible for the voter to correct the defect and return the ballot by mail, the board may notify the voter by telephone or email that the voter may request to have the voter’s application to vote by mail canceled or to come to the clerk’s office in person to correct the defect. Voters have until the close of polls on Election Day to return a cure by mail. Voters have until no later than the sixth day after Election Day to correct a defect in person at the clerk’s office.

Utah

Utah Code Ann. § 20A-3-308(7)
Election officials notify voters of ballot rejection in one to two business days if rejected before Election Day; seven days if rejected on Election Day; and seven days if rejected between Election Day and the end of official canvas. Voters must sign a new affidavit statement provided by the clerk’s office and return by 5 p.m. the day before the official canvass (seven-14 days after Election Day).

Vermont

17 V.S.A. § 2546

§ 2547
Not later than the next business day after deeming a ballot defective, the clerk shall transmit a notice to the voter informing the voter that the ballot was deemed defective and rejected, stating the reason it was deemed defective, and providing the voter with information to correct the error. If the defective ballot is identified within five business days before the election, the clerk is not required to mail a notice; instead, the clerk shall make a reasonable effort to provide notice to the voter as soon as possible using any contact information in the voter checklist. Voters have until the close of polls on Election Day to cure a defective ballot.

Virginia

VA Code Ann. § 24.2-709.1
Within three days of finding a ballot incomplete or incorrect, the registrar shall notify the voter in writing or by email of the error or failure and shall provide information on how to correct the issue. Voters have until noon on the third day after the election to cure a ballot.

Washington

Wash. Admin. Code 434-261-050

Voters notified by mail of rejected ballots due to missing/mismatching signature statements. Voter must sign and return a curing statement before election certification (21 days after Election Day). Three days before certification, county auditors must attempt to contact by phone any voters with outstanding ballots to be cured.