Be an Active Voter by taking the necessary steps to vote in the 2020 U.S. elections!
In some states, voter registration and ballot request deadlines for the November 2020 are as early as October 5th. Whether you are a first-time voter or have already received ballots and voted absentee in past elections, we recommend that you complete a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) each year to ensure you are able to participate in elections as an overseas absentee voter.
If you have already completed a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) in 2020 and requested electronic delivery of your ballot, you will be receiving your blank ballot or instructions for how to access your ballot soon if you have not already received it. If you are not sure about the status of your absentee ballot request you should contact your local election officials in the United States or check the status of your registration via your state’s voter registration verification website.
HELP SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT OVERSEAS VOTING
Please help spread the word to your friends, family, and colleagues that now is the time to start thinking about overseas voting. Consider posting to your Twitter, Instagram, Facebook or other social media account that you are an active voter and will be dropping off or mailing your Federal Post Card Application or completed ballot. Use #ProudOverseasVoter to help get the word out about voting.
If you have never voted while overseas before, it’s not too late. The process is easy – just follow these steps:
- Complete a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA)
Completing a FPCA allows you to register to vote and request absentee ballots for all elections for federal offices (presidential and state primaries, run-off, special, and the November general elections) during the course of the year in which you submit the FPCA. Local election officials in all U.S. states and territories accept the FPCA.
The online voting assistant available at FVAP.gov is an easy way to complete the FPCA. It will ask you questions specific to your state and tell you if electronic ballot delivery is possible. No matter which state you vote in, we encourage you to ask your local election officials to deliver your blank ballots to you electronically (by email, internet download, or fax, depending on your state). Be sure to include your email address to take advantage of electronic delivery. The online voting assistant will generate a printable FPCA, which you can then print and sign.
- Submit the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA)
Most states allow you to return your FPCA and voted ballot electronically. If your state requires you to return paper voting forms or ballots to local election officials by mail, you can do so free of charge by following these instruction : Place your ballot requests or voted ballots in “postage paid” return envelopes (click here to create envelope) or in envelopes bearing sufficient domestic U.S. postage, and address them to the relevant local election officials. Drop the envelopes off at the American Citizen Services Unit of American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) every Thursday from 2 to 3 pm, and we’ll send it back home for you without the need to pay international postage.
If you can’t visit AIT in person, you can mail the “postage paid” return envelopes (click here to create envelope ) or envelopes bearing sufficient domestic U.S. postage that are addressed to local election officials and contain your ballot request or voted ballot to “American Citizen Services Unit, American Institute in Taiwan, 100 Jinhu Road, Neihu Dist., Taipei, 11461”. Please note that AIT will not confirm receipt. It takes approximately three weeks for voting materials to reach local election officials. Please plan accordingly.
You can also drop off your FPCA or voted ballot at the Absentee Ballot Box placed inside the Consular Entrance of the AIT on Jinhu Road, from 8 am to 5 am, Monday thru Friday.
If it’s more convenient , you can also return your FPCA or ballot to your local election officials via international mail or professional courier service at your own expense.
- Receive Your Ballot
After submitting your FPCA, most states allow you to confirm online your registration and ballot delivery selection. States are now required to send out ballots 30 days before an election (September 19) for federal office (President, U.S. Senate, or U.S. House of Representatives) to any overseas U.S. citizen who has completed an FPCA.
- Return Your Ballot
We recommend that if you plan to return your paper ballot to your election officials via AIT, please make sure that we receive it by September 24th. Please follow the same instruction under 2. Submit the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA)
If you have registered to vote and requested your absentee ballot by your State’s deadline but have not received your regular State ballot within 30 days of the election, you may use the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB). It is a backup ballot you can use if you don’t receive your ballot in a timely manner. If your official absentee ballot arrives after sending in the FWAB, fill out and send in the official ballot too. Only one will be counted.
YOUR VOTE COUNTS
Many U.S. elections within the past ten years have been decided by a margin of victory of less than 0.1%. All states are required to count every absentee ballot as long as it is valid and reaches local election officials by the absentee ballot receipt deadline (differs by state).
Be an educated voter. Check out the FVAP links page for helpful resources that will aid your research of candidates and issues. You can also read national and hometown newspapers online and search the Internet to locate articles and information.
To receive information by email about election dates and deadlines, subscribe to FVAP’s Voting Alerts (firstname.lastname@example.org). FVAP also shares Voting Alerts via Facebook and Twitter. If you have any questions about registering to vote overseas, please contact AIT’s Voting Assistance Officer at voteTaipei@state.gov.