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Absentee Voting

Absentee Voting

County Auditor

Any registered voter in Iowa may request an absentee ballot through their county auditor.

Absentee Ballot Request Form Instructions

A registered voter may make written application to their County Auditor for an absentee ballot. A written application for a mailed absentee ballot must be received by the voter's County Auditor no later than 5:00 p.m. 15 days before the election.

In order to receive an absentee ballot, a registered voter MUST provide the following necessary information:

  • Name
  • Date of birth
  • Iowa residential address
  • Voter Verification Number (ID Number)
    • Iowa Driver's License or Non-Operator ID Number OR
    • Four digit Voter PIN located on the voter's Iowa Voter ID Card
    • Any voter may request an Iowa Voter ID Card by contacting their County Auditor's Office
  • The name OR date of the election for which you are requesting an absentee ballot
  • Party affiliation - only required for Primary Elections, which are held in even numbered years
  • Signature and date the form was completed

All voters are encouraged to provide their phone number and/or email address in the event their County Auditor needs to confirm any information on the request form.

Returning the Ballot

Mark your ballot, and then follow the instructions included with your ballot to return it in the postage-paid return envelope. It is vital that you utilize the return envelope supplied by the county auditor.

You can:

Mail your ballot so that is received before 8 PM CT on Election Day


Hand deliver your ballot to your county auditor during business hours or any time up until 8 PM CT on Election Day


You may designate someone to return your ballot under one of following circumstances:

  • The designee is an immediate family member.
  • The designee is a member of your household.
  • You are disabled and you have designed someone to return your ballot.

Directions and rules for designating someone to return your ballot are included in the official instructions included with your mailed ballot.


Surrender your absentee ballot at your precinct polling place on Election Day and vote a regular ballot


Vote a provisional ballot at the polls on Election Day if you cannot surrender your voted absentee ballot.

Voted absentee ballots cannot be delivered to the polling place on election day.

If you have questions about absentee voting, please contact your County Auditor.

This section does not apply to UOCAVA voters. For information on returning ballots as a UOCAVA voter, please visit the Military Voters or Overseas Civilian Voters sections of our website.