South Dakota Absentee Ballot Guide

Last updated October 10, 2013

Military and Overseas voters should visit FVAP.gov. Long Distance Voter's information should only be used by voters with US mailing addresses.

Important Deadlines

  • Voter Registration: Received 15 days before the election
  • Absentee Ballot Application: Received by 3:00 pm on Election Day (yes, really!)
  • Voted Absentee Ballot: Received by close of polls on Election Day

How to vote by absentee ballot

Register to vote

Recommended: Use our Voter Registration Tool.  Enter your information, print and sign the completed form, and mail it to the address printed on the form. 

You can download the South Dakota Voter Registration Form.  Complete and sign the form and mail it to your County Auditor.

Verify your voter registration

It's best to verify your voter registration before applying for your absentee ballot.  If there's a problem with your registration, register again before proceeding.

NOTE: Most people receive their voter registration cards in the mail 2-3 weeks after registering to vote. Don't worry if you lost your voter registration card. You don't actually need it to vote.

Apply for your absentee ballot

Good news!  Any South Dakota voter can vote absentee by absentee ballot.

Download and complete South Dakota's Application for Absentee Ballot.  South Dakota has ID requirements for absentee voters, which means you'll either need to include a photocopy of your ID with your application or you'll need to have the application notarized or witnessed by an official who can administer an oath.  

Acceptable forms of ID include: A South Dakota driver’s license or non-driver identification card;  A passport or an identification card, including a picture, issued by an agency of the United States government; A tribal identification card, including a picture; or a current student identification card, including a picture, issued by an accredited institution of higher education, including a university, college, or technical school, located within the State of South Dakota.

Mail or hand-deliver your completed application to the appropriate elections officials:

Receive, complete, and return your absentee ballot

Here's what you do with your ballot once you receive it:

  1. Mark your ballot privately.
  2. Place your ballot in the return envelope and seal it securely.
  3. Complete the statement on the back of the return envelope and SIGN IT.
  4. Mail the ballot to the person in charge of the election, deliver it in person, or authorize someone to deliver it for you.
  5. The ballot must be received by the person in charge of the election by 7:00 p.m. (in time to transmit it to your precinct polling place) on election day.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Do I need to provide ID when I vote by absentee ballot in South Dakota?

Your absentee ballot application must be notarized or witnessed by an official who can administer an oath. 

As an alternative to notariziation, you can send a photocopy of a valid form of identification with their absentee ballot application. Acceptable forms of ID: A South Dakota driver’s license or nondriver identification card; A passport or other picture ID issued by the United States government; a tribal photo ID; OR a current student photo ID issued by a South Dakota high school or postsecondary education institution.

Can I vote in person before the election in South Dakota?

Yes. Check out our Early Voting page for details.

Additional Information

State Election Website: http://sdsos.gov/elections/default.aspx
Email: elections@state.sd.us
Local Election Officials: Your Local Election Official is the best person to contact if you have questions.  They'll be able to provide up-to-date information on rules and deadlines. 

 

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