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A step-by-step guide to making sure your vote by mail is counted this year

Step one: register.

Anna Rahmanan
Written by
Anna Rahmanan

As the United States Postal Service deals with a barrage of complications due to financial hardships and political stints, what we advise all Americans to do is prepare for a possible vote-by-mail scenario come November. 

To make sure that your vote will properly be counted, we worked on a step-by-step guide (useful links included) to help you through the whole process. We suggest you get all set up as soon as possible to avoid any last-minute issues. 

1. Register to vote!

Can't remember whether you're actually registered to vote? Don't worry, it happens to the best of us. You can actually confirm your registration status right here

If you changed your name or address within your state, you'll have to update your information (click here for that). A word of advice: make sure to also update your driver's license or state ID if you'll be using either one to vote.

If you recently moved to another state, you'll have to re-register—which you can do here. Use that same link if registering for the very first time (congrats!).

2. Receive or request a ballot

Certain states will automatically send you a ballot while, in others, you'll have to request one. In general, you can always ask to be sent an absentee ballot through this link.

3. Keep deadlines in mind

Once again, every state has different guidelines but, as a general statement, it's important to keep deadlines in mind to make sure your vote is actually being counted (some states require you to send your vote in before Election Day, for example).

The Skimm has partnered with the U.S. Vote Foundation to create an incredibly nifty site that breaks down each state's requirements, deadlines and more. This page right here lists all 2020 primary election dates. Find your state, check the deadline and then browse through the local voting requirements.

4. Get informed

This should really be step one. You don't need us to tell you that information is power: read all you can about the different candidates and the issues that hit close to home. The Skimm, once again, delivers: their election site breaks down each topic of conversation, delves deep into both tickets and more.

5. Mail in your vote!

Easy, peasy.

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