Voter Registration & Elections
2020 PRESIDENTIAL GENERAL ELECTION
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 3, 2020
New Absentee Rules for the 2020 General Election
H.5305/R.149, signed into law on September 16, 2020, made significant changes to absentee voting rules for the November 3, 2020 General Election.
The use of unattended absentee ballot drop boxes is prohibited.
Deadline to apply for an absentee by mail ballot:
Applications must be received by the voter registration office by 5:00 p.m., Saturday, October 24.
An Authorized Representative acting on behalf of a voter who is unable to go the polls due to an illness or disability may return the application by 5:00 p.m., Friday, October 30.
All voters are now qualified to vote absentee under the “State of Emergency” reason.
“State of Emergency” does not apply to any other election.
Check back here soon for details on additional changes to absentee voting rules for the November 3, 2020 General Election.
COVID-19 and Voting
It is highly recommend that voters wear a mask to protect themselves and for the safety of all voters and election workers while casting their ballots in-person. Voters will be provided with a single, one-time-use cotton swab to make ballot choices on the Ballot Marking Devices.
Our election workers will be wearing face masks/shields and gloves, using sneeze guards & cleaning voting equipment and tables to limit the spread of COVID-19. Staying Safe When Voting - What is Being Done to Protect Voters and Workers? (PDF)
VOTE ABSENTEE BY MAIL
In South Carolina, State Election Law Requires Voters to Complete, Sign, and Return an Absentee Application before an Absentee Ballot can be Issued or Mailed.
Absentee By-Mail Ballots will be placed in the mail starting about 30 days prior to the General Election.
1. Get Your Absentee Application
2. Complete and Return Your Absentee Application
Voters Must Sign and Date the Absentee Application. Then return the application to the Board of Voter Registration Office of York County. Voters may use any method to Return the Application (In-Person, By-Mail, Email, Fax, etc.).
Once an Absentee Ballot Application is returned, the voter's application is checked in and placed on a list for ballots to be issued.
3. Receive Your Absentee Ballot in the Mail
Absentee By-Mail Ballots will be placed in the mail starting about 30 days prior to the General Election. Any Absentee By-Mail Ballot Requested for this General Election, will be issued to voters via USPS beginning around the first of October.
** Once an Absentee Ballot has been Issued\Mailed to the Voter, the voter may not vote at the polls on Election Day. **
4. Vote and Return Your Absentee Ballot
Vote and Return your Absentee Ballot by mail or personal delivery. Ballots returned by mail should be mailed no later than one week prior to election day to help ensure timely delivery.
Ballots must be received by the Board of Voter Registration Office of York County by 7:00 p.m. on election day.
- Place the ballot in the "ballot here-in" envelope.
- Next, place the "ballot here-in" envelope in the return envelope.
- Sign the voter's oath and have your signature witnessed.
Anyone can witness your signature. A notary is not necessary.
REQUIREMENTS TO CHALLENGE A BALLOT
Poll managers, any voter, and any qualified watcher may challenge the vote of a person who may be known or suspected not to be a qualified voter. A challenge may also be made if you have good reason to believe the person has already voted or has become disqualified for any cause. Challenges of ballots cast in person in the absentee precinct and at the polling place on election day must be made prior to the voter casting the ballot. No challenges can be made after that time. All challenges must be addressed to poll managers and not directly to voters. Challenges of absentee by mail ballots must be made prior to separating the ballot from absentee return envelope, which can begin as early as 9:00 a.m. on the day preceding the election. Challenges in the absentee precinct are very rare because the voter has the opportunity to make address changes or otherwise correct his voting record with election officials before casting an absentee ballot. If a challenged voter casts a provisional ballot, the challenger must appear or produce evidence at the provisional ballot hearing to sustain the challenge; otherwise, the ballot will be counted.