Overseas Citizen Voter
In 2008 the Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment Act (MOVE) was passed and former Secretary of State Chris Nelson developed the first system specifically designed for uniformed and overseas voters. This UOCAVA system was named after the Uniformed and Overseas Absentee Voting Act, which turned a 60 day process into a 24 hour transaction. The UOCAVA system allows all military and overseas voters to submit their absentee ballot application electronically (fax or e-mail). For Federal elections a UOCAVA voter may receive their absentee ballot electronically.
The UOCAVA system was used for the first time in the 2010 general election and continued to be used in the 2012 and 2014 elections. Secretary of State Shantel Krebs will continue using UOCAVA as there were 518 uniformed and overseas citizen voters who used this system to vote absentee in the 2014 election. UOCAVA was developed at a cost of less than $100,000 and funded from the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) grant.
If you are an overseas citizen voter and want to register to vote, please register
to vote and send your application to your County Election Official.
Absentee Ballot Applications
If you are an overseas citizen voter, and unable to attend your polling place in
person on Election Day, you may vote by absentee ballot. Absentee voters may obtain
an absentee ballot several ways:
If you have questions regarding registering or voting in South Dakota as an overseas
citizen or if you would like the state to mail you a paper voter registration or
absentee ballot application, contact the Secretary of State's Office at (605) 773-3537
An overseas citizen voter may receive an absentee ballot electronically. If you
want to receive your ballot in this manner, mark the e-mail preference in block
5 on your Federal Post Card Application Form (Federal Form Number 76A) or personally
contact your County Election Official by e-mail or phone. You will be notified by
e-mail when your ballot is available to download. If
you do not choose to receive an absentee ballot electronically, your ballot will
be mailed to you.
Overseas citizens voting by absentee ballot must have their ballots received at
their polling location prior to the polls closing. If an absentee ballot is delivered
to a polling place after the polls are closed, the absentee ballot will not be counted
Federal Write-In Absentee Ballots
Overseas citizen voters who are outside the United States on Election Day may vote by using a Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB). To vote using a FWAB you must have already requested an absentee ballot from your County Election Official by using the South Dakota Absentee Ballot Application Form, or a Federal Post Card Application (Federal Form Number 76A).
A FWAB returned to the County Election Official will be handled and counted the same way as an absentee ballot cast on an official absentee ballot.
Home on Election Day?
If you are home on Election Day and have not voted by absentee ballot, you may,
if registered, appear at your election district polling place and vote.
Federal Voting Assistance Program
If you will be out of the country and wish to vote, the Federal Voting Assistance
Program will guide you through the process at www.fvap.gov.