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San Mateo County Assessor-Clerk-Recorder-Elections
Shape the Future. Vote!

Official Election Site of San Mateo County

MARK CHURCH, Chief Elections Officer & Assessor-County Clerk-Recorder

Vote by Mail


Permanent Vote by Mail

Effective January 1, 2002, California's Election Law allows any registered voter to become a Permanent Vote by Mail Voter (Chapter 922, AB 1520, 2001 Statutes.)

When an application for Permanent Vote by Mail Voter status is received and processed by the Registration & Elections Division, all election materials including an official ballot will automatically be mailed to the voter for each election in which the voter is qualified to participate; usually within 20 days before an election. The voter no longer needs to submit a Vote by Mail ballot request for each subsequent election.


Failure to vote in four consecutive statewide elections, however, will cancel your Permanent Vote by Mail Voter status, but will not affect your active voter registration status. If you do not vote in a statewide election, you will need to re-apply for permanent Vote by Mail status.

If you wish to obtain further information, please call our Registration & Elections Division at (650) 312-5222 or email registrar@smcare.org.


Mail BoxVote by Mail in Every Election
You can register to become a Permanent Vote by Mail Voter three ways:


  1. Print, fill out, sign and mail back the Permanent Vote by Mail Application Permanent Vote By Mail Application

  2. Email, Mail or Fax your completed and signed application to:



    Registration & Elections Division
    40 Tower Road
    San Mateo, CA 94402
    Attention: Vote by Mail Unit
    Fax: (650) 312-5348

Note: If you’re unable to print out the above form, you may mail us a letter requesting to become a Permanent Vote by Mail Voter. Please include the following information: full name, residence address, mailing address, and your signature.

Applications to Vote by Mail must be received by the San Mateo County Registration & Elections Division seven (7) days before an election.

Emergency Vote by Mail Voting - Authorized Ballot Pick-up

If, during the seven days before an election, you find that you will be unable to vote in person on Election Day, you may request in a written statement, signed under penalty of perjury, that a ballot be delivered to your authorized representative. Your authorized representative will receive your ballot after presenting the signed statement at the San Mateo County Registration & Elections Division.

Overseas Voting - Uniformed and Overseas Voters
San Mateo County voters who are overseas or in the military may register and apply for an absentee ballot by completing a Federal Post Card Application form (Standard Form 76). This form is available at your local US Embassy or by visiting the Federal Voting Assistance Program website at www.fvap.gov.



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Registration & Elections Division
40 Tower Road, San Mateo, CA 94402
Phone: (650) 312-5222
Fax: (650) 312-5348
Email: registrar@smcare.org


Assistance for Voters with Disabilities:

Dial 711 For Telecommunications Relay Service
Phone: 1 (888) 762-8683
Language Assistance
Phone: 1 (888) 762-8683 or 1 (888) SMC-VOTE