How to Vote by Mail
Did you know that more than 60% of Montanans vote by mail in every election? That's because voting by mail is safe, secure, and convenient.
Completing your mail ballot is simple. The steps below will guide you through the process and help make sure your vote is counted.
Open your ballot and check the contents.
In addition to your official ballot and envelopes, your county will include important information and instructions. Make sure to read this information carefully.
To vote, you will need the three items list below. After you identify each of these items, put them in a safe place until you’re ready to vote.
Official Ballot - This is the document listing offices and candidate names.
Ballot Secrecy Envelope - This envelope is clearly marked. You can’t miss it!
Return Envelope - This envelope has the address of your county elections office on the front and a barcode and signature line on the back.
Review your official ballot.
Take a moment to read through each open office, candidate names, and any ballot measures. This is a great time to do any research on candidates or issues before you fill in your ballot.
Vote your ballot.
Grab a blue or black pen, and use it completely fill in the ovals next to the candidate of your choice. Don't make any other marks on the ballot, and make sure you only select ONE candidate per office.
You are not required to vote in every race. Your vote will still be counted for those races you selected.
Seal your completed ballot in the secrecy envelope.
After you have reviewed your ballot, fold it and place it in the secrecy envelope. Include ONLY your completed ballot. You do not need to return any instructional or informational materials you received.
Once you have confirmed that you selected the correct envelope, seal your ballot inside.
Place the secrecy envelope inside the return envelope.
Your return envelope is pre-addressed to your county elections office and includes a barcode on the back. Put your sealed secrecy envelope inside the return envelope.
Sign and date your return envelope.
Locate the signature line on the return envelope. It's marked with an X. You'll also find a space to write the date. Before you move on, make note of two important things.
Make sure to sign and date ONLY in the indicated spaces.
Sign your envelope carefully. This one is INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT. The signature on your return envelope MUST match the signature the elections office has on file from your voter registration or absentee ballot form. If the signatures do not match, your ballot will be rejected. (More on that here.)
Return your ballot.
Seal all of the contents safely inside your signed and dated return envelope. It is ready to go to your county elections office!
Your ballot must be received by your county elections office by 8pm. Try to get your ballot in early! Submitting your ballot before Election Day allows you to track your ballot and ensure that it was received and accepted.
There are two ways to return your ballot.
Returning Your Ballot By Mail: Mail is a safe and socially-distant way to cast your ballot. Your mail must be received, not postmarked, by 8pm on Election Day, so drop your ballot in the mail early.
Returning Your Ballot In-Person: You can also return your ballot at your county's elections office or a designated drop off location. If you return a ballot in person, it must be received by your county elections office by 8pm on Election Day.