In Oklahoma, any registered voter may vote by absentee ballot. Absentee ballots may be cast either by mail or in-person at their county election board office or other approved locations in the days prior to the election (early voting). It is not necessary to give a reason for voting absentee. Under Oklahoma statute, any person who knowingly executes a false application for an absentee ballot is deemed guilty of a felony punishable by up to five years in prison or a fine of up to $50,000.
A voter may apply for an absentee ballot online or by mail. They may apply for absentee ballots for one election, for several elections, or for all elections in which they are eligible to vote during the calendar year in which the application is submitted. The deadline to request an absentee ballot is 5:00 p.m., the third Monday (15 days) prior to an election. An absentee ballot must be received by the county election board by 7 p.m. on Election Day to be counted.
Except for certain individuals (see below), mail-in absentee ballots must be signed by a notary public. In May 2020, the Oklahoma Supreme Court struck down the notary requirement, but Republican lawmakers immediately passed new legislation to reinstate it. However, for 2020 elections only, in light of Covid-19 concerns, voters were given the option of including a copy of a photo ID in lieu of having their absentee ballot notarized.
Special conditions apply for certain categories of voters, including physically incapacitated voters; voters who care for physically incapacitated persons who cannot be left alone; residents of nursing homes; military and overseas voters and their families, and first responders and emergency workers.
In the 2022 General Election in November, 202,980 ballots for Governor, or 17.6 percent of all ballots, were cast absentee. This includes 70,738 cast by mail and 132,242 cast during in-person early voting. See the Election Board’s absentee voting page for additional information.