Away on Election Day
To vote by special ballot, you will need to complete an application form and provide one piece of identification. Special ballot application forms become available once a general election or by-election has been called.
Find out more about the identification requirements for voting by special ballot:
Ontario electors can apply to vote by mail once a general election or by-election in their electoral district has been called.
To vote by mail using special ballot, you will need to complete an application form and provide a copy of your identification. Your identification can be submitted by mail as a photocopy, or electronically as a photograph or scanned document.
To obtain an application form:
- Download it from our website (this will become available once a general election or by-election has been called)
- Contact us by calling collect at 1-416-649-1046
- Email us at email@example.com.
To submit your completed application form:
- Scan your application form and identification document and email them as an attachment to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Mail your application form and a photocopy of your identification document to Elections Ontario, Special Ballot, 51 Rolark Drive, Toronto, Ontario M1R 3B1
- Fax your application form and a copy of your identification document to 1-416-212-8723 or toll free in Canada and USA at 1-888-483-4448
We MUST receive your application and a copy of your identification document no later than 6:00 P.M. (Eastern Time) six days before election day.
A special ballot officer at Elections Ontario will review your application and the copy of your identification document. If your application is approved, you will be sent a special ballot kit.
The special ballot kit includes:
- A write-in ballot
- A secrecy envelope
- An elector confirmation envelope
- A pre-addressed return envelope
- Detailed voting instructions
Once the kit has been mailed to you, you will be unable to choose another voting option, such as voting at an advance poll or in person on election day.
We use a courier service to mail ballots. In order for you to receive your ballot within two to three days, your mailing address must be a physical address. If your mailing address includes a Post Office Box, your ballot may be delayed by up to two weeks.
We MUST receive your write-in ballot no later than 6:00 P.M. (Eastern Time) on election day.
You can choose to vote in person by special ballot at your local returning office from the day after the election is called until 6 P.M. (Eastern Time) the day before election day.
The location of your returning office will become available as soon as a general election or by-election in your electoral district is called. You can find the location of your returning office on your Voter Information Card, on our website or by contacting us.
To vote by special ballot, you will need to bring identification. An election official will ask for your identification and provide you with an application form that you will need to complete.
Once the election official has approved your application, they will issue you a ballot. When issued a ballot, indicate the name of the candidate of your choice on the ballot and place the ballot in the ballot box.
If you are hospitalized during a general election, you can vote by special ballot during our three day Hospital Program.
You will be able to use either your hospital bracelet or any other identification document that shows your name and address.
An election official will bring an application form and a blank write-in ballot to the hospital to assist you in voting.
Not all hospitals in the province of Ontario participate in the Hospital Program. To find out if your hospital participates in the Hospital Program, contact your local returning office, or Elections Ontario by calling collect to 1-416-649-1046.
Returning office information will become available once a general election has been called. You will be able to find returning office information on your Voter Information Card, using our Voter Information service, or by contacting us.
You can still take part in elections if you are currently studying away from home.
If you are studying somewhere else in Ontario, you can choose to vote in the electoral district where you permanently reside OR in the electoral district in which you are temporarily living to attend school. Remember, you must show identification that includes both your name and residential address when you go to vote.
If you are studying outside of Ontario, you can vote by mail by submitting a special ballot application form, or by applying to be on the Register of Absentee Electors of Ontario.
Special ballot application forms will become available once a general election or a by-election has been called.
Register of Absentee Electors of Ontario application forms are available anytime. Electors on the Register of Absentee Electors will automatically be sent a special ballot kit once a general election or by-election in their electoral district has been called.
Please include “Special Ballots – Information” in the subject line
Attention: Special Ballots
51 Rolark Drive
Toronto ON, M1R 3B1
Toll-Free in Canada and the United States: 1-855-523-5932
Collect calls from anywhere in the world: 1-416-649-1046
TTY toll-free in Canada and the United States: 1-888-292-2312
Toll-free in Canada and the United States: 1-888-483-4448
From anywhere in the world: 1-416-212-8723
Please include “Elections Ontario – Attention: Special Ballots” on your cover page.