Ballot Pickup, Delivery, and Return Services

 

State elections law allows a voter in certain circumstances to authorize another person to pick up their ballot and deliver it to them.

Any voter may choose to access their ballot via the Accessible Vote-By-Mail (AVBM) system at sfelections.org/access. The AVBM system allows any voter to download and mark a screen readable ballot; marked ballot must be printed and returned to the Department of Elections. For more information, visit the Vote Using Accessible Vote-By-Mail System page.

Any voter may authorize another person to return their voted ballot for them.

If you plan to authorize another person to pick up or return your ballot for you in this election, we invite you to explore this page and to contact the Department of Elections with any questions.

Notice to Those Assisting Voters: Every voter has the right to cast a secret ballot privately and independently. Although a voter may authorize someone else to pick up, help mark, or return their ballot, under no circumstances should anyone, including the voter’s friends, family members, or caregivers, interfere with the voting process, intimidate the voter, or make decisions on the voter’s behalf. If a voter receiving assistance does not clearly express an intention to vote a certain way in a given contest, the contest should be left blank.

Authorize a family member or housemate to pick up your ballot and deliver it to you

Beginning 29 days prior to Election Day, any registered voter may authorize a spouse, child, parent, grandparent, sibling, or person residing in their household to pick up a vote-by-mail ballot from the City Hall Voting Center and deliver it to them, provided the authorized person is at least 16 years old.

To authorize a family member or housemate to pick up your vote-by-mail ballot for you, complete a Ballot Pickup Authorization Form (PDF) or provide a written authorization. You must sign the form or written authorization under penalty of perjury and include your name, date of birth, residential address, and the name of the person you authorize to pick up your ballot.

The person you authorize will receive your ballot after presenting the signed authorization at the City Hall Voting Center (for hours and information, visit the Vote at the Voting Center page).

Request emergency ballot pickup and delivery

Beginning two weeks prior to Election Day, any registered voter unable to travel to a polling place or voting center because of illness, disability, or confinement to home or hospital, including a voter under COVID-19 related quarantine, may authorize anyone to pick up and deliver the voter’s vote-by-mail ballot on behalf of the voter.

Hospitalized or homebound voters who still need ballots in the last week of the voting period may use this option to authorize their caregivers, family members, friends, etc., to deliver ballots to them.

To authorize someone to pick up a vote-by-mail ballot for you, complete the Ballot Pickup Authorization Form (PDF) or provide a written authorization. You must sign the form or written authorization under penalty of perjury and include your name, date of birth, residential address, and the name of the person you authorize to pick up your ballot.

The person you authorize will receive your ballot after presenting the signed authorization at the City Hall Voting Center (for hours and information, visit the Vote at the Voting Center page.)

In the last week of the voting period, Department of Elections staff can also deliver and pick up ballots for hospitalized or homebound voters. To request such service, voters may call the Department of Elections (415) 554-4375, send an email to sfvote@sfgov.org or submit an Emergency Ballot Delivery and Pickup Form (PDF)

Authorize someone to return your ballot

Beginning 29 days prior to Election Day, any voter who is unable to return their vote-by-mail ballot may authorize another person to return their ballot by mail, or to any ballot drop-off box, voting center, or polling place in the state.

To authorize someone to return your vote-by-mail ballot for you, complete and sign the Ballot Return Authorization section on your official ballot return envelope.