2019 Georgia Code
Title 21 - Elections
Chapter 2 - Elections and Primaries Generally
Article 10 - Absentee Voting
§ 21-2-384. Preparation and delivery of supplies; mailing of ballots; oath of absentee electors and persons assisting absentee electors; master list of ballots sent; challenges; electronic transmission of ballots
(1) The superintendent shall, in consultation with the board of registrars or absentee ballot clerk, prepare, obtain, and deliver before the date specified in paragraph (2) of this subsection an adequate supply of official absentee ballots to the board of registrars or absentee ballot clerk for use in the primary or election or as soon as possible prior to a runoff. Envelopes and other supplies as required by this article may be ordered by the superintendent, the board of registrars, or the absentee ballot clerk for use in the primary or election.
(2) The board of registrars or absentee ballot clerk shall mail or issue official absentee ballots to all eligible applicants not more than 49 days but not less than 45 days prior to any presidential preference primary, general primary other than a municipal general primary, general election other than a municipal general election, or special primary or special election in which there is a candidate for a federal office on the ballot; 22 days prior to any municipal general primary or municipal general election; and as soon as possible prior to any runoff. In the case of all other special primaries or special elections, the board of registrars or absentee ballot clerk shall mail or issue official absentee ballots to all eligible applicants within three days after the receipt of such ballots and supplies, but no earlier than 22 days prior to the election; provided, however, that should any elector of the jurisdiction be permitted to vote by absentee ballot beginning 49 days prior to a primary or election, all eligible applicants of such jurisdiction shall be entitled to vote by absentee ballot beginning 49 days prior to such primary or election. As additional applicants are determined to be eligible, the board or clerk shall mail or issue official absentee ballots to such additional applicants immediately upon determining their eligibility; provided, however, that no absentee ballot shall be mailed by the registrars or absentee ballot clerk on the day prior to a primary or election and provided, further, that no absentee ballot shall be issued on the day prior to a primary or election. The board of registrars shall, within the same time periods specified in this subsection, electronically transmit official absentee ballots to all electors who have requested to receive their official absentee ballot electronically and are entitled to vote such absentee ballot under the federal Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act, 42 U.S.C. Section 1973ff, et seq., as amended.
(3) The date a ballot is voted in the registrar's or absentee ballot clerk's office or the date a ballot is mailed or issued to an elector and the date it is returned shall be entered on the application record therefor.
(4) The delivery of an absentee ballot to a person confined in a hospital may be made by the registrar or clerk on the day of a primary or election or during a five-day period immediately preceding the day of such primary or election.
(5) In the event an absentee ballot which has been mailed by the board of registrars or absentee ballot clerk is not received by the applicant, the applicant may notify the board of registrars or absentee ballot clerk and sign an affidavit stating that the absentee ballot has not been received. The board of registrars or absentee ballot clerk shall then issue a second absentee ballot to the applicant and cancel the original ballot issued. The affidavit shall be attached to the original application. A second application for an absentee ballot shall not be required.
(b) Except for ballots voted within the confines of the registrar's or absentee ballot clerk's office, in addition to the mailing envelope addressed to the elector, the superintendent, board of registrars, or absentee ballot clerk shall provide two envelopes for each official absentee ballot, of such size and shape as shall be determined by the Secretary of State, in order to permit the placing of one within the other and both within the mailing envelope. On the smaller of the two envelopes to be enclosed in the mailing envelope shall be printed the words "Official Absentee Ballot" and nothing else. On the back of the larger of the two envelopes to be enclosed within the mailing envelope shall be printed the form of oath of the elector and the oath for persons assisting electors, as provided for in Code Section 21-2-409, and the penalties provided for in Code Sections 21-2-568, 21-2-573, 21-2-579, and 21-2-599 for violations of oaths; and on the face of such envelope shall be printed the name and address of the board of registrars or absentee ballot clerk. The larger of the two envelopes shall also display the elector's name and voter registration number. The mailing envelope addressed to the elector shall contain the two envelopes, the official absentee ballot, the uniform instructions for the manner of preparing and returning the ballot, in form and substance as provided by the Secretary of State, provisional absentee ballot information, if necessary, and a notice in the form provided by the Secretary of State of all withdrawn, deceased, and disqualified candidates and any substitute candidates pursuant to Code Sections 21-2-134 and 21-2-155 and nothing else. The uniform instructions shall include information specific to the voting system used for absentee voting concerning the effect of overvoting or voting for more candidates than one is authorized to vote for a particular office and information concerning how the elector may correct errors in voting the ballot before it is cast including information on how to obtain a replacement ballot if the elector is unable to change the ballot or correct the error.
(c) (1) The oaths referred to in subsection (b) of this Code section shall be in substantially the following form:
I, the undersigned, do swear (or affirm) that I am a citizen of the United States and of the State of Georgia; that I possess the qualifications of an elector required by the laws of the State of Georgia; that I am entitled to vote in the precinct containing my residence in the primary or election in which this ballot is to be cast; that I am eligible to vote by absentee ballot; that I have not marked or mailed any other absentee ballot, nor will I mark or mail another absentee ballot for voting in such primary or election; nor shall I vote therein in person; and that I have read and understand the instructions accompanying this ballot; and that I have carefully complied with such instructions in completing this ballot. I understand that the offer or acceptance of money or any other object of value to vote for any particular candidate, list of candidates, issue, or list of issues included in this election constitutes an act of voter fraud and is a felony under Georgia law.
Signature or Mark of Elector
Printed Name of Elector
Oath of Person Assisting Elector (if any):
I, the undersigned, do swear (or affirm) that I assisted the above-named elector in marking such elector's absentee ballot as such elector personally communicated such elector's preference to me; and that such elector is entitled to receive assistance in voting under provisions of subsection (a) of Code Section 21-2-409.
This, the day of , .
Signature of Person Assisting
Printed Name of Person
Reason for assistance (Check appropriate square):
 Elector is unable to read the English language.
 Elector requires assistance due to physical disability.
The forms upon which such oaths are printed shall contain the following information:
Georgia law provides that any person who knowingly falsifies information so as to vote illegally by absentee ballot or who illegally gives or receives assistance in voting, as specified in Code Section 21-2-568 or 21-2-573, shall be guilty of a felony.
(2) In the case of absent uniformed services or overseas voters, if the presidential designee under Section 705(b) of the federal Help America Vote Act promulgates a standard oath for use by such voters, the Secretary of State shall be required to use such oath on absentee ballot materials for such voters and such oath shall be accepted in lieu of the oath set forth in paragraph (1) of this subsection.
(d) Each board of registrars or absentee ballot clerk shall maintain for public inspection a master list, arranged by precincts, setting forth the name and residence of every elector to whom an official absentee ballot has been sent. Absentee electors whose names appear on the master list may be challenged by any elector prior to 5:00 P.M. on the day before the primary or election.
(e) The State Election Board shall by rule or regulation establish procedures for the transmission of blank absentee ballots by mail and by electronic transmission for all electors who are entitled to vote by absentee ballot under the federal Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act, 52 U.S.C. Section 20302, et seq., as amended, and by which such electors may designate whether the elector prefers the transmission of such ballots by mail or electronically, for use in county, state, and federal primaries, elections, and runoffs in this state and, if the Secretary of State finds it to be feasible, for use in municipal primaries, elections, and runoffs. If no preference is stated, the ballot shall be transmitted by mail. The State Election Board shall by rule or regulation establish procedures to ensure to the extent practicable that the procedures for transmitting such ballots shall protect the security and integrity of such ballots and shall ensure that the privacy of the identity and other personal data of such electors who are entitled to vote by absentee ballot under the federal Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act, 52 U.S.C. Section 20302, et seq., as amended, to whom a blank absentee ballot is transmitted under this Code section is protected throughout the process of such transmission.
Code 1933, §§ 34-1404, 34-1405, enacted by Ga. L. 1964, Ex. Sess., p. 26, § 1; Ga. L. 1970, p. 347, § 27; Ga. L. 1974, p. 71, §§ 4, 5; Ga. L. 1977, p. 684, § 1; Ga. L. 1977, p. 725, § 1; Ga. L. 1982, p. 3, § 21; Ga. L. 1982, p. 1512, § 5; Ga. L. 1985, p. 206, § 1; Ga. L. 1985, p. 496, § 13; Ga. L. 1985, p. 632, § 4; Ga. L. 1986, p. 32, § 1; Ga. L. 1987, p. 34, § 1; Ga. L. 1987, p. 417, § 5; Ga. L. 1989, p. 643, § 9; Ga. L. 1990, p. 143, § 4; Ga. L. 1992, p. 1, § 2; Ga. L. 1992, p. 1815, § 3; Ga. L. 1995, p. 1027, § 9; Ga. L. 1997, p. 649, § 6; Ga. L. 1998, p. 295, § 1; Ga. L. 1999, p. 21, § 1; Ga. L. 1999, p. 52, § 12; Ga. L. 2001, p. 230, § 14; Ga. L. 2003, p. 517, § 38; Ga. L. 2005, p. 253, § 53/HB 244; Ga. L. 2006, p. 888, § 3/HB 1435; Ga. L. 2007, p. 536, § 1/SB 40; Ga. L. 2008, p. 261, § 1/SB 456; Ga. L. 2010, p. 569, §§ 4, 5/HB 1073; Ga. L. 2011, p. 683, § 12/SB 82; Ga. L. 2011, p. 697, § 2/HB 92; Ga. L. 2012, p. 995, § 26/SB 92; Ga. L. 2017, p. 697, § 17/HB 268; Ga. L. 2019, p. 7, § 30/HB 316.