Witness signature requirement to be waived for Special Election in March

Richmond

A bowl of stickers for those taking advantage of early voting, Sunday, March 15, 2020, in Steubenville, Ohio. Elections officials in the four states, Arizona, Florida, Illinois and Ohio, holding presidential primaries next week say they have no plans to postpone voting amid widespread disruptions caused by the coronavirus outbreak. Instead, they are taking extraordinary steps to ensure that voters can cast ballots and polling places are clean. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

RICHMOND, Va. (WAVY) – The Department of Elections announced Thursday that the witness signature requirement will not apply for the upcoming Special Election in March.

This means that voters who believe they may not safely have a witness present while completing the absentee ballot for the March 23, 2021, Special Election are not required to have a witness present or have a witness sign their ballot envelope. 

Officials say that ballots will not be rejected due to a missing witness signature.

Additionally, a statement released by the department says, “these instructions override any instructions on ballot envelopes regarding witness signatures.”

Updated instructions will be sent to voters who have requested an absentee ballot, but have yet to return the ballot.

A court recently ruled that the absentee ballot witness signature requirement will not apply to the March election in the 38th Virginia Senate District.

Virginia Senate District 38 includes all of Bland, Buchanan, Dickenson, Russell, Pulaski, and Tazewell counties, Norton City, Radford City, and parts of Montgomery, Smyth, and Wise counties.

For more information, contact your local registrar’s office.

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