Jason M. Gant

Secretary of State

Overseas Citizen Voter

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:

  • Fill out and print an absentee ballot application and mail it to your County Election Official
  • Request that the state e-mail an absentee ballot application to your e-mail account. To do this, contact your County Election Official, visit the Voter Information Portal, or visit the Deployed and Overseas Citizens tab on this website.
  • Complete and send a Federal Post Card Application Form (Federal Form Number 76A), distributed by the United States Department of Defense and send it to your County Election Official to request an absentee ballot.
  • Download an absentee ballot application by clicking this button: Download Voter Registration Form

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 or elections@state.sd.us.

Absentee Ballots

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 4 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 or opened.

Special Write-In Absentee Ballots

Overseas citizen voters who are outside the United States on Election Day might receive a special write-in absentee ballot. Election officials use write-in ballots when they are required by law to provide absentee ballots to absentee voters, but official absentee ballots have not yet been printed.

The special write-in ballot includes all of the offices and questions that will appear on the official ballots for the election district, but not the names of the candidates for the offices. Instead, elections officials will provide a separate list of candidates who have filed to appear on the official ballot and who have not withdrawn or had their names removed from the ballot by a court.

A special write-in absentee ballot 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.