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South Carolina absentee ballot guide

Last updated: June 25, 2020
  • In South Carolina, you can apply for an absentee ballot online, by-mail , or in-person.

All South Carolina voters can request a mail-in absentee ballot for the June 9 election due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Absentee ballot deadlines

  • In-person: 4 days before Election Day
  • By-mail: Received 4 days before Election Day
  • Online: 4 days before Election Day
  • Voted absentee ballots are due: Received by Election Day

Who can vote by absentee ballot in South Carolina

In most cases you can only apply for an absentee ballot and vote by mail in South Carolina if you will be away from your county of residence on Election Day.

South Carolina will let you apply for an absentee ballot and vote by mail even if you're not away from your county on Election Day if:

  • you are physically disabled
  • your job prevents you from voting
  • you are a certified poll watcher, poll manager, or county election official and you will be working on Election Day
  • you are attending to sick or physically disabled persons
  • you have been admitted to the hospital as an emergency patient on day of election or at least four days prior to Election Day
  • there has been a death or funeral in your family within three days before Election Day
  • you are on jury duty in state or federal court on Election Day
  • you are 65 or older
  • you are confined to a jail or pre-trial facility pending disposition of arrest or trial
  • you are a member of the Armed Forces or Merchant Marines (or a spouse or dependent residing with such a person)

Any voter can now select Reason 18 – State of Emergency on the absentee application for the June 2020 Primary and Runoff Elections.

Apply online (recommended)

  1. You can apply for an absentee ballot online in South Carolina.
  2. We recommend this option, since it is faster than applying by-mail or in-person.
  3. The deadline to apply online is: 4 days before Election Day.

Apply by-mail or in-person

  1. Download and fill out the South Carolina absentee ballot application.
  2. Sign and date your form.
  3. Mail or hand-deliver your completed form directly to your local election office. You should submit your form as soon as possible, but no later than the deadline.
  4. The deadline to apply for an absentee ballot by-mail is: Received 4 days before Election Day.
  5. The deadline to apply for an absentee ballot in-person is: 4 days before Election Day.

Your absentee ballot should arrive within a week of your application. If it doesn’t arrive, call your local election office and follow up.

Once your ballot arrives

  1. Once you receive your absentee ballot, carefully read and follow the instructions.
  2. Mail or hand-deliver your completed absentee ballot to your local elections office. Your ballot must be received by the deadline or it will not be counted.
  3. Your voted absentee ballot must be received by Election Day.

Confused? Need help?

Contact your local elections office if you have any questions about absentee ballots in South Carolina.