Provisional Voting

For additional questions, please contact Elections and Voter Registration at (570) 517-3165.

  • How do I complete the Provisional Ballot?
    • Instructions for voting by provisional ballots are supplied with the ballot. Assistance can also be provided by the Judge of Elections.
  • How do I know if my Provisional Ballot was counted?
    • Within seven (7) days after the election, the county board of elections will examine the provisional ballot to determine the validity of your completed provisional ballot.

      At least seven (7) days after the election, using the information provided to you on the provisional ballot identification receipts, call 1-877-VOTES-PA or visit Pennsylvania Department of State. Provide your provisional ballot identification number.

      You will be told whether you provisional ballot was counted, partially counted, or not counted. If you provisional ballot was not counted, you will be told why your provisional ballot was not counted.
  • What is a Provisional Ballot?
    • A provisional ballot is a paper ballot that is printed in the same format as other paper ballots or absentee ballots. Provisional ballots are returned unopened by the district election officials to the county board of elections, which has the responsibility to determine in a public meeting whether the provisional ballot was qualified to vote at the election district where he cast the provisional ballot.

      If the voter was qualified to vote, the provisional ballot envelope will be opened, but the ballot will remain enclosed in the secrecy envelope to ensure that no one will know the identity of the voter that cast the provisional ballot. The ballot will be opened and counted later after other provisional ballots that have been accepted are commingled to ensure the secrecy of the ballot.

      If the county board determines that the provisional voter was not qualified to vote in the election, the ballot will be declared invalid and the ballot will not be counted.

      If the board determines that the voter was eligible to vote in the election but not at the election district where he cast the provisional ballot, the board will count the ballot. However, the board will count votes cast only for those offices and on those ballot questions that appear both on the ballot that the voter cast and the ballot of the election district in which the voter should have voted.
  • What is Provisional Voting?
    • Provisional voting is a new voting process that ensures that registered voters are not denied the right to vote because they are not listed in the district register, or unable to provide approved identification when required.
  • Who may vote by Provisional Ballot?
    • Individuals are to be provided the opportunity to cast a provisional ballot if:

      1. The individual appears to vote and claims to be properly registered and eligible to vote in the election district, but the election official cannot verify his/her registration.

      2. Regardless of whether the individual’s name appears on the general register, the individual does not have an approved form of identification the first time he/she appears to vote in an election district.

      3. An election official asserts that the individual is not eligible to vote. (in a Primary Election this includes voters who claim to be registered for a particular political party, but the register indicates they are registered as a member of another political party).

      Individuals are required to vote by provisional ballot if:

      1. The voter is voting as a result of a Federal or State court order.

      2. A voter is voting as result of an order extending the time established for closing the polls by State law that is in effect for ten (10) days before an election.