In the recent presidential elections, so important to Democrats worldwide, many voters were surprised and dismayed to find that ballots that they had requested from their local US election officials sometimes months beforehand did not arrive in time for them to post them back to the US for the election.
Under UOCAVA (Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act) you the voter are PROTECTED! According to this act, your ballot MUST be sent out to you (and this is often by e-mail) at least FORTY-FIVE days before the election date, giving you ample time to cast your vote and return it in time, even if your state is one that allows submission only by mail.
If for some reason your ballot DOESN’T arrive, you have an added protection: you may use the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot, sometimes available only to those who have signed up previously under the special protections of UOCAVA. Local Election Officials are trained to sort out FWABs…If both the FWAB and the regular ballot are received, they count the regular ballot and throw away the FWAB.
With the new postal cutbacks and restrictions, many voters from abroad learned that the FWAB was an excellent back-up plan, and sent in their write-in ballots MONTHS before the election, just in case….
Here at Democrats Abroad Yucatan many of us have undergone a training course and are certified as Voting Assistance Officers with the Federal Voter Assistance Program…we have materials that explain the rights and obligations in each state, your local election official information, envelopes….everything you need to get your vote in on time.