Directions to complete your mail in ballot

When your ballot arrives, there will be three key components:

  1. ) Ballot.

  2. ) Secrecy envelope.

  3. ) Return/declaration envelope.


Officials say to think of the ballot like grade school. The ovals may be small, but fill them out as dark and within the lines as possible.

Officials recommend blue or black ink, and not to 'check' or 'X' the oval, but to fill it out completely.

Secrecy Envelope

The ballot will go into this nondescript envelope. This essentially anonymizes your vote. Officials recommend folding the ballot in half twice and putting it into the secrecy envelope.

Officials say to put no markings on the secrecy envelope. It does not need a stamp, nor does your outer declaration envelope.

Return/Declaration Envelope

The ballot will be in the secrecy envelope, and both are then put into the return/declaration envelope.

  • The declaration envelope has a bar code unique to each voter.

  • When your elections office receives your mail-in ballot, they scan to show that voter cast a ballot.

  • That scan goes into a system that would prevent a voter from casting another ballot.

  • In Pennsylvania, this postage will be paid for already.

  • You must also sign, date and write your name and address on the back of the envelope.

  • Officials say to write the current date, not your birthday.

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