Wisconsin Absentee Ballot Guide

Last updated October 10, 2014
Military and Overseas voters should visit the Overseas Vote Foundation. Long Distance Voter's information should only be used by voters with US mailing addresses.

Important Deadlines

  • Voter Registration Form: Postmarked 20 days before the election. You may also register in person on Election Day.
  • Absentee Ballot Application: Received by 5:00 p.m. on the Thursday before the election
  • Voted Absentee Ballot: Delivered in person no later than Election Day or postmarked no later than Election Day and received by 4 p.m. on the Friday after the election

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 also download and complete the Wisconsin Voter Registration Form. Mail the completed form, along with your proof of residence, to your Municipal Clerk.

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.

Apply for an absentee ballot:

Good news!  Any registered voter may vote by absentee ballot in Wisconsin.

Download and complete Wisconsin's Application for an Absentee Ballot. Mail, email, or fax the completed application to your Municipal Clerk.  Your request must be received by the clerk no later than 5pm on the Thursday before the election.

NOTE: If you apply for an absentee ballot in person at your municipal clerk's office, you must vote immediately, seal your ballot in the proper envelope, and return it to a member of the clerk's staff.  No ballots may be taken from the clerk's office.

Receive, complete, and return your absentee ballot

Complete your absentee ballot and sign where indicated. A witness must watch you complete your ballot, though the witness should not see how you have voted.  Once completed, place your ballot in the certification envelope provided to you with your ballot.  You and your witness must both sign the certification envelope.  The witness must be a US citizen and at least 18 years of age who is not a candidate for office; they must provide their address. Mail your completed ballot to your Municipal Clerk. The municipal clerk must receive your completed ballot by 8pm on election day.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Do I need to provide ID when I register to vote in Wisconsin?

Yes.  If you are registering to vote for the first time in Wisconsin, and you register by mail or you register in person during the 20 days preceding the election or at the polls on election day, you must submit "proof of residence" with your voter registration form.

Acceptable forms of proof of residence includes any one of the following (submit a copy if you mail your registration): a current and valid Wisconsin driver's license; a current and valid Wisconsin I.D. card; any other official I.D. card or license issued by a Wisconsin governmental body or unit; any employer-issued photo I.D. card, issued in the normal course of business, but not including a business card; a university, college or technical college fee card or I.D. card with your photo and current address (May be used even if the card does not contain the cardholder's address, if the educational institution provides a certified student list for use at the polling place); a utility bill (e.g., gas, electric, cable TV or telephone) for the period commencing not earlier than 90 days before election day;a bank statement; a real estate (i.e., property) tax bill or receipt for the current year or the year preceding the date of the election; a pay check or a government check or other document issued by unit of government.

People who register in person may also show a current residential lease which is effective for a period that includes election day.  You may not use your lease if you register by mail.

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

No. Just weeks before the 2014 election, the Supreme Court ruled Wisconsin's voter ID law unconstitutitional. Since this happened so close to the election, your absentee ballot instructions may tell you you need ID. But for the 2014 election, no ID is required.

Can I vote in person before the election in Wisconsin?

Yes. Check out our Early Voting page for details.

Additional Information

State Election Website:


Email: http://elections.state.wi.us/contact.asp
Local Election Officials: Your Local Election Official is the best person to contact if you have voting-related questions.  They'll be able to provide up-to-date information on rules and deadlines. 


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