Absentee and Early Voting

Applying to Receive a Ballot by Mail

Apply for an Absentee or Vote by Mail Ballot 

Applications for mail-in ballots may be obtained from the Town Clerk or the Office of the Secretary of State's office online here. Application forms are also available to download and submit to the Town Clerk's office:

Apply in Writing

You may also apply in writing to the Town Clerk to vote absentee. When writing, you must include the following:

  • Name
  • Address as registered
  • Address where you wish the absentee ballot sent
  • In a primary, the party ballot you want
  • Your signature

Whichever method you choose, the application or request for an absentee ballot must be made in writing and signed.

Application Submittal Process & Timeline

Applications for vote by mail or absentee ballots must be received by the Town Clerk before 5:00 PM on the fifth business day before an election - May 9th, 2023 for this year's Town Election (and in person Absentee voting must be done by noon the day before the election). A voter who is admitted to a health care facility after noon of the fifth day before an election may apply for a ballot up until the close of the polls and may request to have the ballot delivered. Absentee ballots generally are available three weeks before an election.

If the voter submits the application in person, he may obtain the ballot and vote immediately "over the counter". If the ballot is not available, it will be sent to the voter by mail. When the application is submitted in person by a family member, the ballot must be sent by mail to the voter. And in all other cases, the ballot is sent by mail.

If you wish to vote by absentee ballot for more than one election in a year you may make one application and request that ballots for all elections during that calendar year be sent to you.

Returning an Absentee or Vote By Mail Ballot

There are several options for returning your ballot. You may return your ballot by:

  • Mailing it back using the envelope provided; or
  • Hand-delivering your ballot to your local election office (Town Hall, 29 Middle Rd.); or
  • Using the ballot drop box at Town Hall.

Ballots cannot be dropped off at a polling place on Election Day.

Use the Track My Ballot tool to check the status of your ballot. The tracker will show you the date your ballot was mailed, the date it was returned, and whether your ballot was accepted or rejected.

All ballots and envelopes must be signed by the voter, or if the voter is unable to sign, by an assisting person.

Absentee Ballots for the Disabled

If you are disabled and unable to come to the polls to vote, you may request an absentee ballot, or use the new online portal. For more information visit the Secretary of State's page here: https://www.sec.state.ma.us/ele/eleev/early-voting-by-mail-accessible.htm 

Call the Town Clerk at 978-264-1727 for information about how to register to vote at home or to request that a mail-in registration form be sent to you.

Any patient in a nursing home must be a registered voter in order to vote by absentee ballot and must fill out an absentee ballot application. If the clerk designates a health care facility in writing 28 days before the election, the ballot must be hand-delivered to such facility by a Registrar. If the patient states that he/she has entered a hospital after noon of the fifth day before the election, the ballot may be hand-delivered to the voter; otherwise, the ballot should be mailed to the voter at the facility. Consult the administration of the nursing home for further instructions.

Permanently Disabled Voters

A voter who is permanently disabled need not submit a request for an absentee ballot for every election. If such a voter submits a note from a registered physician indicating that the voter is permanently disabled, the Town Clerk will send the voter an application for an absentee ballot 28 days before the first election each year. The application will be as complete as the Town Clerk can make it. The voter in most cases will only have to sign the application, return it, and indicate that the voter would like an absentee ballot for every election in that year. Upon the Town Clerk’s receipt of the signed application, the voter will be sent an absentee ballot.