Absentee Voter Information
Absent Voter Ballots
You must be a registered voter to receive an absent voter ballot. Your request for an absent voter ballot must be in writing and submitted to the City Clerk. Requests to have an absent voter ballot mailed to you must be received by the City Clerk no later than 5:00 P.M. the Friday before the election.
Ways to apply for an absentee ballot:
- Apply online through the Michigan Voter Information Center
- Download an Absent Voter Ballot Application. Once signed, this form can be submitted in person, via mail, or email.
- To request an application by mail, contact the City Clerk's office at 517-647-3211.
- Visit City Hall, 259 Kent St., Portland to apply in person.
You can deliver signed applications by one of the following methods:
- Place in the drop box, located in the drive thru at City Hall.
- Scan or take a photo of the signed application and email it to the City Clerk.
- Mail the application in the postage paid return envelope.
- Fax the completed application to 517-647-2938
- Any member of the immediate family of the voter may mail or deliver the application to the office of the City Clerk.
Once your application is received by the City Clerk, your signature on the application will be checked against your voter registration signature before a ballot is issued. If your signature is not a good likeness to the version on your voter registration, the City Clerk will attempt to contact you via phone, email, and/or letter. Only the requester may sign the application. Election law does not allow for anyone other than the registered voter to sign.
If an emergency, such as a sudden illness or family death prevents you from reaching the polls on Election Day, you may request an emergency absent voter ballot. Requests for an emergency ballot must be submitted after the deadline for regular absent voter ballots has passed but before 4:00 P.M. on Election Day. The emergency must have occurred at a time which made it impossible to apply for a regular absent voter ballot. Please contact the City Clerk for more information about emergency absent voter ballots.
Returning an Absent Voter BallotAfter receiving your absent voter ballot, you have until 8:00 P.M. on Election Day to complete the ballot and return it to the City Clerk's office. Voters are strongly encouraged to submit their voted ballot as soon as it's completed. Your ballot will not be counted unless your signature is on the return envelope and is a good likeness to the signature on file. If you received assistance voting the ballot, then the signature of the person who helped you must also be on the return envelope. Only you, a family member or person residing in your household, a mail carrier, or election official is authorized to deliver signed absent voter ballots to the City Clerk's office.
You can deliver your completed and signed ballots by one of the following methods:
- Place in the drop box located in the drive thru at City Hall.
- Mail the ballot in the postage paid return envelope.
- Any member of the immediate family of the voter may mail or deliver the ballot to the City Clerk's office.
Automatic Absentee Voter Application List
Current registered voters can apply to be placed on the automatic absentee voter (AV) application list. To apply, submit the form below or send an email or written request to the clerk's office.
- You only need to apply once. If you are already on the automatic AV application list, no need to re-apply. An application will be sent to you for each election.
- This automatic list is for registered voters in the City of Portland only.
- You will remain on the list unless you change your registration address, your voter registration is canceled, or you request to be removed from the automatic AV voter application list.
Important points to remember:
An application for an absentee ballot must be received before a ballot will be issued. We will never automatically send ballots. We will automatically send applications. A dual application may be used for a primary/general election allowing you to apply for both elections with just one application.
- If you wish to vote in person at the precinct and are on the automatic AV application list, disregard the application and don't return it to the clerk's office.
- All absentee ballots are counted for every election.
- Your ballot must arrive at the clerk's office by 8:00 p.m. on Election Day to count.