Absentee Voting

All Absentee applications and ballots should be returned to:
Board of Voter Registration and Elections of Pickens County
222 McDaniel Ave Suite B-9
Pickens, SC 29671

Absentee Voting Deadlines

Election Date Election Name Deadline to Return
Absentee Application
by Mail*
Deadline to Return
Absentee Ballot
by Mail
Deadline for Voting
Absentee In-Person at County Offices
November 3, 2020 Statewide General Election & City of Clemson General Election5 pm Friday October 30, 20207 pm Tuesday November 3, 2020Monday-Friday, October 5, 2020 – November 2, 2020,
SATURDAY, OCTOBER 31st, 2020 9am-1pm
*Voters should apply at least one week prior to election to allow adequate mail time. Applying late puts voters at risk of being unable to return ballots by the deadline of 7 pm on election day.

The Board of Voter Registration & Elections of Pickens County is responsible for facilitating absentee voting for all Federal, State, County, and Municipal elections within Pickens County, South Carolina. Absentee voting is not the “early voting” that you may have heard about on the news. 

To vote absentee, you must be a registered voter and meet one of the following criteria:

  • A Member of the Uniformed Services on Active Duty (UOCAVA)
  • A Merchant Marine (UOCAVA)
  • A Spouse or Dependent of a member of the Uniformed Services or Merchant Marine (UOCAVA)
  • A U. S. Citizen Permanently Residing Outside the United States (UOCAVA)
  • A U. S. Citizen Temporarily Residing outside the United States (UOCAVA)
  • Persons Disabled
  • Student, their spouse, or dependents residing with them who are out of their county of residence on Election Day
  • For reasons of employment will not be able to vote on Election Day
  • Government employees, their spouses, and dependents residing with them, who are out of their county of residence on Election Day
  • Persons on vacation who will be outside their county of residence on Election Day
  • Persons who will be serving as jurors in a state or federal court on Election Day
  • Persons admitted to the hospital as emergency patients on day of election or at least four days prior to the election. The voter can have an immediate family member apply and carry a ballot to the voter.
  • Electors with a death or funeral in the family within 3 days before the election
  • Persons confined to a jail or pre-trial facility pending disposition of arrest or trial
  • Persons attending sick or physically disabled persons
  • Certified poll watchers and poll managers, county registration board members and staff, and county election commission members and staff working on Election Day
  • Persons sixty-five years of age or older (Voting Accessibility for the Elderly and Handicapped Act)
  • State of Emergency (2020 Election Only)

Voting Absentee In-person

The fastest and easiest way to vote absentee is to appear in-person at our office and cast your ballot on our voting machines. This is usually available starting 3-weeks prior to an election.

Step One: Request
The voter appears at our office and requests to vote absentee. Voters will be asked to show one of the following valid Photo IDs:

  • S.C. Driver’s License
  • ID Card issued by S.C. Department of Motor Vehicles
  • S.C. Voter Registration Card with Photo
  • Federal Military ID (includes Veterans Administration Card)
  • U.S. Passport

For complete information on the voter ID law, how to obtain a Voter Registration Card with Photo, and reasonable impediment exception please click here.

Step Two: Application
The voter will be issued an Application for an Absentee Ballot that will need to be completed and returned to office staff. On the application, the voter must disclose the reason he/she is voting absentee.

Step Three: Voting on Machine
A staff member will guide the voter to a voting machine and activate a ballot. The voter will be able to cast his/her ballot on the machine in the privacy of a voting booth.

Additional Information

  • All persons voting in person must cast their ballot on the iVotronic Voting Machines, unless their ballot is challenged. Paper ballots cannot be given to voters as long as the voting machines are operating normally.
  • The In-office Absentee Precinct closes at 5:00PM the Monday prior to the Tuesday election.

Voting Absentee By Mail

Persons unable to vote in-person may choose to vote absentee by mail instead. Because the ballot must be mailed to the voter, this process takes a minimum of four days for the ballot to be mailed to the voter, voted, and mailed back to our office. Below is the process for voting absentee by mail:

Step One: Request
The voter must submit a request to our office to let us know that he or she is interested in voting absentee in a specific election. The request can be made anytime during the calendar year in which the election will be held. The request should include:

  1. Voter’s Name
  2. Voter’s Registration Number
  3. Voter’s Residence and Mailing Addresses
  4. Voter’s Phone Number
  5. Name and Date of the Election in which he/she wishes to vote absentee
  6. Voter’s E-mail Address (Optional)
  7. Reason (Qualification) For Requesting to Vote Absentee

The request can be made by any of the following methods:

  • In-person: Voter makes request in-person at our office.
  • By Mail: A letter or note with the above information mailed to: Board of Voter Registration & Elections of Pickens County 222 McDaniel Ave., B-9 Pickens, SC 29671. The voter must sign this request.
  • By Fax: A letter or note with the above information faxed to Board of Voter Registration & Elections of Pickens County at 864-898-5637. The voter must sign this request.
  • By E-mail: An email with the above information sent to [email protected]

A member of the voter’s immediate family or the voter’s authorized representative may request the absentee ballot application for the voter. An authorized representative is a registered voter who, with a voter’s permission, can request an absentee ballot application on behalf of a voter who qualifies because of illness or disability. Candidates and paid campaign workers may not serve as authorized representatives.  If you are interested in serving as a voter’s authorized representative, please contact our office for more information.

Step Two: Office Issues Application For An Absentee Ballot 
We will send the voter an Application for an Absentee Ballot after we have received and processed their request. The application can be sent to the voter by mail.

Step Three: Voter Returns Application For An Absentee Ballot
The voter must completely fill out the application and return it to our office. The deadline for receiving the completed application is 5:00 p.m. on the 4th day prior to the election (the 4th day is Friday for all Tuesday elections).  You may return the application in person or by mail, email, or fax.

Step Four: Office Mails Absentee Ballot
Upon receipt of the completed Application for an Absentee Ballot from the voter, the application will be verified and processed. A ballot will then be sent to the voter via the USPS First Class Mail to the address the voter listed on the application as soon as ballots become available. Ballots cannot be picked-up from our office, all ballots must be mailed.  

Step Five: Voter Returns Absentee Ballot to Our Office
The voter must vote the ballot following ballot instructions and return it to our office by the time the polls close on on the day of the election (7:00pm for all elections except Veterans Affairs which is 6:00pm). You may return the ballot in person or by mail. The voter cannot return the ballot to any other location (i.e. at their voting precinct).

  • Your completed absentee ballot must be placed in the “Ballots Herein” envelope provided with your absentee ballot. The “Ballots Herein” envelope will then be placed inside a “Return Envelope” which you must sign and have witnessed before returning.
  • To have your absentee ballot returned by a person other than yourself, you the voter must complete the “Authorization to Return Absentee Ballot Form”. The absentee voter completes Part I, and the person returning the ballot completes Part II of the form. Candidates and paid campaign workers may not return absentee ballots unless they are an immediate family member of the voter.

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