Section 3509.05 | Voting and return procedure.
(A) When an elector receives an absent voter's ballot pursuant to the elector's application or request, the elector shall, before placing any marks on the ballot, note whether there are any voting marks on it. If there are any voting marks, the ballot shall be returned immediately to the board of elections; otherwise, the elector shall cause the ballot to be marked, folded in a manner that the stub on it and the indorsements and facsimile signatures of the members of the board of elections on the back of it are visible, and placed and sealed within the identification envelope received from the director of elections for that purpose. Then, the elector shall cause the statement of voter on the outside of the identification envelope to be completed and signed, under penalty of election falsification.
If the elector does not provide the elector's driver's license number or the last four digits of the elector's social security number on the statement of voter on the identification envelope, the elector also shall include in the return envelope with the identification envelope a copy of the elector's current valid photo identification, a copy of a military identification, or a copy of a current utility bill, bank statement, government check, paycheck, or other government document, other than a notice of voter registration mailed by a board of elections under section 3503.19 of the Revised Code, that shows the name and address of the elector.
The elector shall mail the identification envelope to the director from whom it was received in the return envelope, postage prepaid, or the elector may personally deliver it to the director, or the spouse of the elector, the father, mother, father-in-law, mother-in-law, grandfather, grandmother, brother, or sister of the whole or half blood, or the son, daughter, adopting parent, adopted child, stepparent, stepchild, uncle, aunt, nephew, or niece of the elector may deliver it to the director. The return envelope shall be transmitted to the director in no other manner, except as provided in section 3509.08 of the Revised Code.
When absent voter's ballots are delivered to an elector at the office of the board, the elector may retire to a voting compartment provided by the board and there mark the ballots. Thereupon, the elector shall fold them, place them in the identification envelope provided, seal the envelope, fill in and sign the statement on the envelope under penalty of election falsification, and deliver the envelope to the director of the board.
Except as otherwise provided in division (B) of this section, all other envelopes containing marked absent voter's ballots shall be delivered to the director not later than the close of the polls on the day of an election. Absent voter's ballots delivered to the director later than the times specified shall not be counted, but shall be kept by the board in the sealed identification envelopes in which they are delivered to the director, until the time provided by section 3505.31 of the Revised Code for the destruction of all other ballots used at the election for which ballots were provided, at which time they shall be destroyed.
(B)(1) Except as otherwise provided in division (B)(2) of this section, any return envelope that is postmarked prior to the day of the election shall be delivered to the director prior to the eleventh day after the election. Ballots delivered in envelopes postmarked prior to the day of the election that are received after the close of the polls on election day through the tenth day thereafter shall be counted on the eleventh day at the board of elections in the manner provided in divisions (C) and (D) of section 3509.06 of the Revised Code. Any such ballots that are received by the director later than the tenth day following the election shall not be counted, but shall be kept by the board in the sealed identification envelopes as provided in division (A) of this section.
(2) Division (B)(1) of this section shall not apply to any mail that is postmarked using a postage evidencing system, including a postage meter, as defined in 39 C.F.R. 501.1.
Available Versions of this Section
- June 21, 2013 – Senate Bill 47 - 130th General Assembly [ View June 21, 2013 Version ]
- September 8, 2016 – Amended by House Bill 359 - 131st General Assembly [ View September 8, 2016 Version ]
- April 7, 2023 – Amended by House Bill 458 (GA 134), House Bill 45 (GA 134) [ View April 7, 2023 Version ]
- October 3, 2023 – Amended by House Bill 33 - 135th General Assembly [ View October 3, 2023 Version ]