(StatePoint) For military members and their families stationed away and U.S. citizens living abroad, family and friends are vital connections to life back home. For the 2020 general election, those friends can be an important source of voting information, especially for young people voting for the first time. And this year it’s even more important to register and request an absentee ballot early to avoid potential mail delays or other disruptions resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
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An easy way to help loved ones in the military or abroad vote absentee is by referring them to the Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP), which provides tools and resources to ensure that American citizens can vote from anywhere in the world.
Voters can visit FVAP.gov to find state-by-state official registration and ballot request deadlines, as well as information on completing a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA), which is the registration and ballot request form, and the Federal Write-In Absentee Ballot (FWAB), the backup ballot. Both forms are available at FVAP.gov and can be filled out with the online assistant or by hand. For additional information, visit FVAP.gov, email Vote@FVAP.gov or call 1-800-438-VOTE (8683).
Important things to remember:
1. Submitting your FPCA early is the best way to help ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible.
2. Using the FPCA provides our Service members, their families and overseas citizens with an option to receive balloting materials electronically.
3. Using the FPCA early grants voters the ability to use the FWAB as a backup ballot, if needed.