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  • Explore Boston

Your 2020 Mail-in Voting Guide: All the info you need for general & primary elections!


Governor Charlie Baker recently signed a bill expanding early voting by mail in Massachusetts. Below is your complete 2020 main-in voting guide! ( In-person voting will still be allowed come Election Day.)


State and Primary Elections:

The state primary is on September 1st and the general election is on November 3rd.


Early Voting:

In-person early voting for the primary election will be held from August 22nd- 28th while in-person voting for the general election will be held October 17th-October 30th. Early voting for the primary election will be held on Saturday & Sunday, August 22nd & 23rd, while early voting for the geneal election will be on Saturday & Sunday, October 17th & 18th.


The size of your community will determine election hours. Larger cities with over 75,000 registered voters are required to hold 8 hours of early voting each weekend day, while smaller municipalities of 5,000 voters or less only need to hold 2 hours of voting on those same weekend days. Early voting on weekdays will be held within your city or town clerk's usual business hours, though some of those locations may extend voting hours. Early voting locations for the primary election will be decided by August 7th and October 2nd for the general election.


Voting By Mail:

Applications for mail-in ballots will be sent out by the Secretary of State by July 15th (for the primary election) and September 14th (for the general election). All postage will be pre-paid, making for an easy return of your application. There will also be options to request a ballot online. You may request an application on Secretary Galvin's website or your town clerk's website. Requests for applications can also be made in-person at any town clerk's office. As far as deadlines for these applications, primary applications need to be returned by 5p.m. on Wednesday, August 26th (for the primary election) and by 5p.m. on Wednesday, October 28th (for the general election).


Returning Your Ballot:

To ensure your ballot is returned, it must be mailed to city/town clerks, dropped into a municipal drop-vox or delivered in-person to said clerks. In-person ballots must be dropped off by the close of polls on Election Day. General election mail-in ballots must be mailed out by November 3rd and received by November 6th.


More 2020 Election Fast Facts:

-This year, you do not need a reason to vote by mail.

-No early votes will be counted until Election Day.

-In order to limit person-to-person contact, there may only be a check-in table to cast your ballot. There may also be health regulations regarding PPE, use of hand sanitizer and markers to ensure proper social distancing.

-You must be registered in order to vote. You may register up until 10 days before an election.

-A person hospitalized within one week of an election may have their ballot hand-delivered to their healthcare facililty.

-If your town has a municipal election, early voting by mail will be an option for any election held before December 31st, 2020.

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