ELECTION PROCESS

How To Track Your Mail-In Ballot

Oct 12, 2020, 2:05 PM | Updated: Oct 27, 2020, 11:12 am
FILE (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)...
FILE (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)
(Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)

What happens after you fill out your ballot and put it back in the mail — or in an official drop-box? According to a CNN review, 45 states and the District of Columbia allow you to track your ballot just like an Amazon package or food delivery.

More: Click here to track your Utah mail-in ballot.

How ballot tracking works

Each ballot gets a specific number: Most states, with the help of USPS, send ballots in envelopes with a unique set of numbers for each individual voter. Those numbers are often known as Intelligent Mail Barcodes, which allow the Postal Service to track the ballot.

You can register to track them: They also enable states and localities to use ballot-tracking websites. The tracking technology isn’t automatic, though — you’ll have to register through your state’s voter website to be able to track your ballot. You’ll also have to enter some basic information into the website, including your name, birthday and zip code.

The tracking sites vary in what they do: Some states show updates for each step of the mail-in voting process, while others simply indicate a ballot has been “sent” or “accepted” by local election officials.

In some cases, this technology can also be used to notify voters when there’s an issue with sending or accepting their ballot, giving you notice to fix it before it’s too late.

The states that have ballot tracking technology

Here’s a list of each state’s deadline for requesting a mail-in ballot, as well as which states offer ballot tracking and where to sign up.

And if ballot tracking technology isn’t available where you live, you can contact your local election office if you have questions or concerns about your ballot.

Alabama: October 29 (Track your ballot here)

Alaska: October 24 (Track your ballot here)

Arizona: October 23 (Track your ballot here)

Arkansas: November 2 (Track your ballot here)

California: No request needed — all registered voters will be mailed ballots (Track your ballot here)

Colorado: No request needed — all registered voters will be mailed ballots (Track your ballot here)

Connecticut: November 2 (No ballot tracking available)

Delaware: October 30 (Track your ballot here)

District of Columbia: No request needed — ballots are automatically mailed to active voters (Track your ballot here)

Florida: November 3 (Track your ballot here)

Georgia: October 30 (Track your ballot here)

Hawaii: No request needed — ballots automatically sent to all voters (Track your ballot here)

Idaho: November 3 (Track your ballot here)

Illinois: November 2 (No ballot tracking available)

Indiana: October 22 (Track your ballot here)

Iowa: October 24 (Track your ballot here)

Kansas: October 27 (Track your ballot here)

Kentucky: October 9 (Track your ballot here)

Louisiana: (Track your ballot here)

Maine: October 29 (Track your ballot here)

Maryland: October 20 (Track your ballot here)

Massachusetts: October 28 (Track your ballot here)

Michigan: October 30 (Track your ballot here)

Minnesota: November 2 (Track your ballot here)

Mississippi: October 31 (No ballot tracking available)

Missouri: October 21 (No ballot tracking available)

Montana: November 2 (Track your ballot here)

Nebraska: October 23 (Track your ballot here)

Nevada: No request needed — ballots are automatically sent to active voters (Track your ballot here)

New Hampshire: November 2 (Track your ballot here)

New Jersey: No request needed — ballots are automatically mailed to all active voters who register by October 5 (Track your ballot here)

New Mexico: October 20 (Track your ballot here)

New York: October 27 (Track your ballot here)

North Carolina: October 27 (Track your ballot here)

North Dakota: November 2 (Track your ballot here)

Ohio: October 31 (Track your ballot here)

Oklahoma: October 27 (Track your ballot here)

Oregon: No request needed — ballots automatically sent to all voters (Track your ballot here)

Pennsylvania: October 27 (Track your ballot here)

Rhode Island: October 13 (Track your ballot here)

South Carolina: October 30 (Track your ballot here)

South Dakota: November 2 (Track your ballot here)

Tennessee: October 27 (Track your ballot here)

Texas: October 23 (No ballot tracking available)

Utah: No request needed — ballots automatically sent to all voters (Track your ballot here)

Vermont: No request needed — ballots automatically sent to all voters (Track your ballot here)

Virginia: October 23 (Track your ballot here)

Washington: No request needed — ballots automatically sent to all voters (Track your ballot here)

West Virginia: October 28 (Track your ballot here)

Wisconsin: October 29 (Track your ballot here)

Wyoming: November 2 (Track your ballot here)

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How To Track Your Mail-In Ballot