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How to vote by mail in Louisiana amid the coronavirus pandemic

Most people who can vote can get a mail-in ballot because of the pandemic. Here's how to get one.

NEW ORLEANS — The deadline to apply for a mail-in or absentee ballot for the 2020 November election in Louisiana — Oct. 30 — has passed. The deadline for mail-in ballots to reach parish registrar of voters offices is Nov. 2.

A federal judge says Louisiana must reinstate coronavirus pandemic voting plans used for summer elections rather than using a more restrictive plan approved by the Legislature. 

U.S. District Chief Judge Shelly Dick says the state must allow mail voting for people with conditions that make COVID-19 more dangerous, and their caretakers. 

Under that plan anyone who qualifies to vote in Louisiana can request absentee ballots if they are at least one of the following:

  • Experiencing Symptoms of COVID-19 and seeking a medical diagnosis
  • At higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 due to serious medical conditions identified by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (including chronic lung disease, moderate to severe asthma, hypertension or other serious heart conditions, diabetes, undergoing chemotherapy, severe obesity, chronic kidney disease and undergoing dialysis, liver disease, pregnancy, immunocompromised due to cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow or organ transplantation, immune deficiencies, poorly controlled HIV or AIDS, prolonged use of corticosteroids and other immune weakening medications.
  • Subject to medically necessary quarantine or isolation as a result of COVID-19
  • Advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to COVID-19 concerns
  • Caring for an individual who is subject to necessary quarantine or isolation order as a result of COVID-19 or has been advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to COVID-19 concerns. 

You can apply for an absentee ballot now. There is no start date, and Louisiana's election and the voting website recommend doing it as soon as possible. Once the application is accepted by the registrar of voters, you can vote by mail. 

The deadline to apply for a mailing ballot is 4:30 p.m. Oct. 30 — the 4th day before election day.

Officials want you to plan for standard mail delivery times and the return ballot deadline when applying for a mail ballot to ensure your voted ballot is received before the deadline — Nov. 2. 

You can submit an application requesting a mail-in ballot online through Louisiana's online voter portal, or you can hand-deliver, mail, ship or fax the application directly to your registrar of voters.  

Click here to learn how to apply for a mail-in ballot in Louisiana online

Temporary COVID-19 Application 

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