There are only two ways you can lose your right to vote under Florida law:
- A judge finds that under Florida’s guardianship laws, you are mentally incapacitated with regard to voting.
- A court has convicted you of a felony and suspended your civil rights.
Only a court can take away your right to vote. No one else — not a guardian advocate, not an election official, not a caregiver, not a family member or anyone else, has the legal authority to prevent you from voting. If you need assistance protecting your right to vote, you may contact Disability Rights Florida.
Federal and state law requires
Supervisor of Elections Offices and polling places to be accessible. Everyone should be able to get into his or her polling place. The doors should be wide enough for a wheelchair to fit through. There should be ramps or elevators if there are steps. The parking lot and the walkways must be accessible.
Reporting Accessibility Issues
If your polling place is not accessible, you have complaints about access to voting, or you believe your rights have been violated, please contact your local Supervisor of Elections. If your Supervisor of Elections cannot or will not address your issue in a timely fashion, you may file a complaint by contacting any of the following:
Disability Rights Florida
800-342-0823, extension 6000
2473 Care Drive, Suite 200
Tallahassee, Florida 32308
Election Protection Hotline
1-866-687-8683 – English
1-888-839-8682 – Spanish
Secretary of State, Division of Elections
R.A. Gray Building
500 South Bronough Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0250
Absentee ballots allow you to vote from your home. Obtain your ballot from your local Supervisor of Elections. You can ask for one or an immediate family member can do so for you. Once you have your ballot, if you need assistance in actually filling out your ballot, you can have anyone other than your employer, agent of your employer or an officer or agent of your union, assist you in marking your choices on the ballot. The person can also mark the ballot for you. Then place a stamp on the envelope and mail it back to your Supervisor of Elections. It is that easy.
One advantage of an absentee ballot is that once you obtain your ballot from your local Supervisor of Elections, you control your election experience. If you vote at home, you do not have to deal with having transportation to a polling site or waiting in lines. However, the down side of voting from home is you do not have the community experience of voting in the company of others. Also, some people with disabilities feel it is very important to vote in person at the polls in order to continually emphasize the need for having accessible polling places and equipment.
- July 16, 2016: Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act Ballots Mailed
- July 26, 2016: Absentee Ballot Mailout Begins
- August 2, 2016: Absentee Ballot Mailout Ends
- September 24, 2016: Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act Ballots Mailed
- October 4, 2016: Absentee Ballot Mailout Begins
- October 11, 2016: Absentee Ballot Mailout Ends
Assistance at the Polls
Florida law allows you, as a registered voter, to have assistance marking your choices on your ballot or absentee ballot if you need assistance because of blindness, disability, or inability to read or write.
You may request assistance from election officials or select someone to assist you. You may choose whomever you want to assist you, except someone who is your employer or an agent of your employer or an officer or agency of your union.
If your voter registration record does not already contain a notation about you needing help, you will have to complete and sign a form. The clerk at the polling place can help you fill out the form.
Unless you choose an elections official, the person you choose to help you also has to fill out a form.
If you have any questions about receiving assistance with voting, please direct your questions to
your Supervisor of Elections or the clerk or inspector at the polling place.