All absentee voters now can track their ballots

OCTOBER 26, 2012Image: Elections News

Voters just need to log on to to check status

LANSING, Mich. – Secretary of State Ruth Johnson reminds absentee voters of an innovative online feature that allows voters to check the status of their ballot.

"I encourage absentee voters to visit the Michigan Voter Information Center at to check the status of their ballot," Johnson said. "If they want to know when their ballot was mailed or if it's been received, they can find out online from anywhere they have Internet access."

Once a local clerk receives a voter's application for an absentee ballot, the voter's ballot information is continually updated by the clerk's office as it's sent and received. Absentee ballots are counted on Election Day after polls close.

This election cycle is the first one in which all absentee voters will be able to use the ballot tracking feature. Previously, local clerks were required to use the tracking system only for military and overseas ballots, but legislation promoted by Johnson was signed into law that requires all jurisdictions to participate. Although many large jurisdictions had made use of the feature, many small jurisdictions did not. The Secretary of State's Office had new software created so that clerks in small jurisdictions also would be able to participate.

Voters who can't find up-to-date information about their ballot or who don't have access to the Internet should call their city or township clerk's office.

People who wish to vote absentee must qualify to do so under Michigan law. Registered voters may obtain an absentee ballot if they:

  • Expect to be absent from the community in which you are registered for the entire time the polls will be open on Election Day.
  • Have been appointed to work as an election inspector in a precinct outside of your precinct of residence.
  • Are physically unable to attend the polls without the assistance of another.
  • Are unable to go to the polls due to religious reasons.
  • Are in jail awaiting arraignment or trial.
  • Are 60 years old or older.

Those who wish to receive their absentee ballot by mail must submit their application to their local clerk by 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 3. Absentee ballots can be obtained in person anytime through 4 p.m. Monday, Nov. 5. Voters who request an absentee ballot in person on Monday, Nov. 5 must fill out the ballot in the clerk's office. Emergency absentee ballots are available under certain conditions through 4 p.m. on Election Day.

Besides checking their absentee ballot at the Voter Information Center, voters also can view a sample ballot, their polling location, learn how to fill out their ballot properly and find contact information for their local clerk. A mobile version of the website is also available for smartphone users.


For media questions, please call Gisgie Dávila Gendreau at 517-373-2520.

Related Documents & Topics
> Michigan Voter Information Center