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The League of Women Voters of Metropolitan Columbus

Voting Information

On Election Day       Absentee by Mail       Absentee in Person       Resources

Voting in Person on Election Day

Voter Identification

All voters must have identification with them when they vote. Acceptable forms of ID include one of the following:

If you do not provide one of these documents at the polling place, you will still be able to vote a provisional ballot (see below). You will then be expected to provide identification to the Board of Elections within the 7 days following Election Day. If you do not have any of the above forms of identification, including a Social Security number, you will still be able to vote a provisional ballot by signing an affirmation statement swearing to your identity under penalty of election falsification and by casting a provisional ballot.

Voting Machines

If you are not familiar with the type of voting machine used where you vote, the League of Women Voters recommends that you review the process of using the machine before Election Day. Learn more about voting machines used in your county.

Provisional Ballots

If your eligibility to vote is in question on Election Day, you can use a provisional ballot to cast your vote. No one should be turned away from a polling place without being given the opportunity to vote by provisional ballot. Once election officials can verify your eligibility, the provisional ballot is counted just like any other ballot.

A provisional ballot may be issued if:

If your eligibility is questioned, the League of Women Voters recommends that you cast a provisional ballot rather than leaving the polling place without casting a regular ballot. However, be sure that you are in the correct precinct polling place; if you vote in the wrong one, your vote will not be counted. Read more about provisional ballots and how to follow up on your vote.

Become a Poll Worker

It’s easy, it’s fun, it gives you extra cash, and it allows you to serve your state by actively participating in elections and preserving democracy!

Contact your local Board of Elections to apply. See Voting Links for a list of central Ohio boards of elections.

Absent Voter: Voting by Mail Before Election Day

Under a recent Ohio law, anyone may vote before Election Day using a mail-in form. To do this, you must request an absentee ballot.

Download the absentee ballot request form (.pdf).

Fill out the absentee ballot request form and return it to your Board of Elections. The request form must be received by your county Board of Elections office by mail no later than noon on the Saturday before the election. Your absentee ballot will be mailed to you. Absentee ballots generally become available 35 days before each election (25 days before the presidential primary). Unless you are living outside the United States, absentee ballots must be returned by 7:30 p.m. on Election Day.

Absent Voter: Voting in Person Before Election Day

Under a recent Ohio law, you may vote in person before Election Day at your county Board of Elections using an absentee ballot without having to give any reason for voting absentee. Simply go to the county office in person during regular business hours no later than the day before the election; you must vote your absentee ballot while you are there.

See Voting Links for a list of central Ohio Boards of Elections. The League of Women Voters suggests that you take photo identification with you, even though ID is not explicitly required by law.

It is also possible to register and vote in one visit to the Board of Elections from the 35th to the 30th day before Election Day. (This period is the brief overlap between when absentee ballots are issued and when registration closes for the upcoming election.)

Additional Resources