Military and their Dependents & Citizens Abroad
Anyone serving in the Uniformed Services (which are defined as Army, navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard) and anyone serving in the Merchant Marine, the Commissioned Corps of the Public Health Service and the Commissioned Corps of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration; who is absent from the United States on the date of a given election are qualified UOCAVA absentee voters. United States Government employees serving outside the United States are also included, as are citizens currently residing outside the United States who are qualified to vote in their last place of residence prior to leaving the United States. Military spouses and dependent children are also qualified UOCAVA voters.
Illinois law requires that uniformed and overseas voters had a previous address in Illinois and not be registered to vote in any other state. Spouses and dependents of UOCAVA voters who have never resided in Illinois are also qualified to vote in Illinois elections. Illinois law also allows uniformed and overseas voters to register to vote and apply for an absentee ballot at the same time. Illinois law also allows dependents and spouses of all UOCAVA voters (except non-resident civilian citizens) to simultaneously register to vote and apply for an absentee ballot in Illinois.
(10 ILCS 5/20-2, 20-2.1, 20-2.2, 20-2.3 and 20-3)
The Federal Postcard Application (FPCA) serves as both an application to register to vote and for an absentee ballot. This form is used only by uniformed and overseas voters. The FPCA form may be downloaded from the Federal Voting Assistance website by clicking on the FPCA link Federal Post Card Application (FPCA).
Pursuant to the federal MOVE Act, this card may be faxed, e-mailed or mailed to the election authority. All FPCA’s are now valid for one calendar year. However, due to an overlapping of the federal HAVA and MOVE Acts, those FPCA’s received by the election authority prior to January 1, 2010 will be valid through November 2012. The Federal Voting Assistance Program website is a wonderful source of information regarding your voting rights and the rules and regulations governing those rights. You can access that website by clicking on www.fvap.gov .
Illinois law permits return delivery of a military or overseas ballot …”(i) by mail; (ii) in person by a specified relative of the voter; or (iii) by a licensed motor carrier engaged in delivery of property”. (10 ILCS 5/20-5)
Illinois is a closed primary state, it is imperative that the voter declare his or her party affiliation if they wish to vote in a primary election. If the voter indicates they want a non-partisan ballot they will receive a ballot with only the public questions they are eligible to vote on, there will not be ANY candidates on a Non-partisan ballot.
Under the MOVE Act, you may qualify to receive your ballots by fax or e-mail. This would greatly reduce the transportation time and better enable you to cast your ballot by election deadlines. You may continue to file your FPCA’s directly with our office or you can submit them via the Illinois State Board of Elections website. By using the SBE’s site you will be able to track your application and the subsequent absentee ballots progress online. You can access their site by clicking on this link:
Illinois Military & Overseas Voter Empowerment (MOVE)
If you have questions as to whether you have a valid FPCA on file or if you have any other questions or concerns regarding your registration or voting rights please contact this office at 217-824-4969 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.