Everything you need to know to vote in Vermont!
How to Vote an Early Absentee
The following are the directions a voter
will receive with an early voter absentee ballot for the General Election
Note: In the case of early or absentee voting in a
primary, the envelope instructions will also include appropriate instructions
for separating the ballots and depositing the unvoted ballot(s) in a separate
envelope provided and clearly marked "Unused Ballots."
Voters must mark the
ballots in accordance with the instructions.
A voter who is ill or physically
disabled may ask one of the officers who delivers the ballots, in the presence
of the other officer, to mark the ballot for him or her. A person who gives
assistance to a voter in the marking or registering of ballots may not in any
way divulge any information regarding the choice of the voter or the manner in
which the voter's ballot was cast.
A voter who spoils a ballot may
return the spoiled ballot by mail or in person to the town clerk and receive
another ballot. A voter may receive up to 3 ballots. A person can spoil two ballots
and still vote.
The voter must sign the
certificate on the outside of the envelope in order for the ballot to be valid.
A voter who is physically unable to sign his or her name may mark an "X"
swearing to the statement on the certificate. The officers who deliver the
ballots shall witness the mark and sign their names with a statement attesting
to this fact on the envelope.
Return of Ballots
Early or absentee voter ballots must be returned to the clerk's office before the close of business on the day
before the election (be sure to check your town clerk's hours) or to the polling place by 7:00 p.m. on Election Day.
The ballots may be returned by mail
or in person, unless the ballots were delivered by justices of the peace who
would then return them to the town clerk.
The town clerk must record receipt
of the voted ballot(s) on the list of early or absentee voters.
an early voter absentee ballot has been returned to the clerk in the sealed
envelope with the signed certificate, it shall be stored in a secure place and
shall not be returned to the voter for any reason.
During the hours that the polls
are open, the town clerk delivers the envelopes to the presiding officer in the
polling place where the early or absentee voter would have voted if he had voted
On Election Day, election
officials examine the checklist to see whether the voter has already voted in
person. The election officials also check the certificate on the envelope
containing the ballots to make sure it is properly filled out. When the election
officials are satisfied that the early or absentee voter is legally qualified to
vote, has not already voted in person and that the certificate is properly
filled out, they open the envelope containing the ballot(s). Without unfolding
the ballots or permitting the ballot to be seen, the election officials mark the
entrance checklist indicating the fact that that voter has voted by means of an
early voter absentee ballot, and then they deposit the ballots in the ballot
boxes or voting machine. Early voter absentee ballots are commingled with the ballots of voters
who have voted in person.
When an early or
absentee voter is not legally qualified to vote, or has voted in person, or if
the affidavit on any envelope is insufficient, the certificate is not signed, or
the voted ballot is not in the voted ballot envelope, or, in the case of a
primary vote, the early or absentee voter has failed to return the unvoted
portions of the primary ballots, the envelope must be marked "defective," the
ballots inside may not be counted.
Back to Absentee Voting