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Utah mail-in voting by mail
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Utah voter info: What if there’s a problem with my ballot?

FILE- A employee at the Utah County Election office puts mail in ballots into a container to register the vote in the midterm elections on November 6, 2018 in Provo, Utah. (Photo by George Frey/Getty Images)

Every Utah voter will automatically get a ballot in the mail starting this week. But how do you make sure your ballot doesn’t have a problem and will be counted? Our team found the answers for you.

Information every Utah voter needs to know:

The Nov. 3 General Election in Utah will conducted mainly by mail.

The US Postal Service has urged Utah voters to return by-mail ballots a week before Election Day to help ensure they arrive on time.

Ballots start going out to voters the week of Oct. 12, according to Utah state law.

The post office does not forward ballots.

Postage-paid return envelopes will be provided.

County clerks cannot give or mail ballots to anyone other than the voter.

You must postmark your ballot by no later than Nov. 2, 2020, the day before Election Day. Ballots must arrive at the Election Division by noon on the day of the Board of Canvassers Meeting (Nov. 17) to be valid.

If you’re not sure it’ll make it on time, drop your ballot off in person or at a drop box.

What if there’s a problem with my ballot?

If you make a mistake and need a new ballot, contact you county clerk here for instructions on how to fix it or to receive a new ballot.

If you are not sure whether you signed your affidavit, sign the outside of the envelope.

The signature on that affidavit confirms your identity as the voter who voted the ballot. The signature on the affidavit is compared to your signature on your voter-registration form.

If you make a mistake marking your ballot, cross through the incorrect oval and name. Fill in the correct oval and circle both the oval and the name of the correct choice.

Do not sign or initial your ballot.

The Utah Code notification process says:

  • Election officials notify voters of ballot rejection in one to two business days if rejected before Election Day;
  • seven days if rejected on Election Day; and
  • seven days if rejected between Election Day and the end of official canvas.

What happens if my signature on my ballot envelope doesn’t match?

Your county election officials will compare the signature on your ballot envelope with the signature on your previous ballots and your voter-registration form. If your signature does not match, your county clerk will notify you. You will be given an opportunity to submit an affidavit called a “cure letter” that allows you to affirm that your signature is correct. Once your county election official receives your affidavit, the ballot will be counted.

What happens if my ballot is rejected?

If your ballot is rejected, you will be notified and given instructions on how to correct the problem. The most common reasons ballots are rejected are unsigned ballot envelopes or the signature does not match the voter’s registration record. A rejected ballot will be counted once the problem is corrected.

Only you can sign your ballot

No one else can sign your ballot affidavit for you. If you are unable to sign, please contact our office. Individuals with power of attorney cannot sign the ballot affidavit for a voter.

Can I change my signature?

You may update your signature by completing an online voter registration form or a mail-in form that are both available on your county clerk website. Don’t have internet access? Registration forms can be found at post offices and in election offices.

If you live in Salt Lake County

Voters already registered in Salt Lake County, but who have moved within the county, do not need to re-register to vote. Please call the Election Division at 385-468-8683 or send an e-mail to Got-Vote@slco.org with your name and your new address in Salt Lake County. Your new address will be updated.

If you need your ballot mailed to an address other than your home address, call 385-468-7400 or email got-vote@slco.org.

Voters previously registered in another county in Utah will need to re-register to vote in Salt Lake County. And if you move outside of Salt Lake County, you will need to re-register to vote in the new county or state of residency. Refer to the information above regarding the various methods you can use to register to vote.

Need information for another county? Check out our voter information guide here, which includes contact info for your county clerk. 

Why is KSL NewsRadio covering this?

This story is part of a series explaining the process behind elections in the United States and Utah. We wanted to answer commonly asked questions about the process.

Where did the idea come from?

It came from you! Listeners like you text, email or message us regularly with questions just like this one that sometimes become stories.

How did KSL report the story?

Just like you, when we need to answer tough questions, we perform searches -- sometimes using the library, sometimes online. We also consult with experts in the appropriate field to answer our questions. In this case, we talked to county clerks in the area.

I have an idea for a future in-depth report. How do I tell you about it?

We would love to hear your ideas. You can email our team at radionews@ksl.com. If you are hoping to reach a specific member of our team, you can also contact them directly through our bios, here.