All Ohio voters whose registration information is up-to-date have the opportunity to vote from the convenience of their own homes. Absentee ballots are the first votes counted on Election Night. Simply fill out and return an application to our office and your absentee ballot will be mailed

The deadline to request an absentee ballot is at 12 noon three days before the election in which you want to vote. However, we strongly encourage you submit applications at least 7-10 days prior to the election to allow for postal mailing times.

When returning absentee ballots, the ballot envelope must be postmarked by the day before the election in order to be counted. You can also return your absentee ballot in-person to our office before the close of the polls at 7:30 pm on Election Day.

A new application must be completed and submitted for each election in which you want to vote. We can accept applications as early as January 1 or 90 days before the date of an election, whichever is earlier.


  1. Complete the absentee ballot request form. Voters who want to vote absentee by mail must do this each election. 
  2.  Print, sign and date the paper form.
  3. Mail the request form back to your own county board of elections.
    Allen County Ohio Voters send forms to:
    Allen County Board of Elections
    204 N. Main
    Lima, OH 45801-4457
  4. Wait to receive your ballot in the mail from your county board of elections. Allen County Voters can track their ballot status online using this link. This information is updated daily. 
  5. Follow the received instructions, Vote your ballot and fill out the ID envelope.
  6. Place your voted ballot with the stub into the ID Envelope. Place the ID Envelope into the provided Return Envelope.
  7. Return your voted ballot. You can send it by U.S. Mail or deliver it in person to your county board of elections. There is a Drop Box at the entrance of the Allen County Board of Elections at 204 N. Main Street, Lima OH 45801.

    The returned envelope must either:
    – Be received at the Board of Elections office or Dropbox prior to the close of the polls at 7:30 p.m. on Election Day
    – Be postmarked no later than the day before the election and received by the board of elections no later than 10 days after the election.

Please plan accordingly. The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) estimates that it may take two to five days delivery time. We encourage you to not wait to send your ballot application the week before the election. Delivery delays could prevent you from getting your ballot in enough time to return your ballot by the above deadlines.

When We Receive Your Ballot

Bipartisan teams of each major party will open the return envelope and the ID envelope will be verified with the information and signature with the registration record. If there is required information missing you will be notified what is needed and how to cure the issue so that your ballot counts. This information is also found on online with the Track My Ballot link.

Bipartisan teams will process the ballots and on Election Night the Absentee results will be tabulated and reported shortly after 7:30 p.m. Election Night. Absentee results are the first results reported on Election Night.

You should not use a postage meter or an online service (such as stamps.com) to affix postage.

It is your responsibility to make sure the ballot has enough postage.

If you do not vote your absentee ballot and instead decide to go to your assigned polling place on Election Day, you must vote a provisional ballot.

Note: No voted ballot may be returned to a board of elections by fax or e-mail. If a voted ballot is returned by fax or e-mail, it will not be accepted, processed, or counted.