Postal voting – frequently asked questions

Updated: 30 October 2019

Postal voters will receive an envelope which they must use to return their postal vote ballot papers. The envelope may be either blue in colour, or white on one side and light blue on the other, and will be attached to the green House of Representatives ballot paper.

The envelope will have three parts:

  • One side will have the postal address of the voter and the postal address of an AEC 'Divisional Returning Officer'.
  • The other side will have the AEC logo and the words 'Postal vote' in the top left hand corner with the declaration details below (including an area titled 'elector details' and an area titled 'authorised witness to complete').
  • The envelope will also have a small flap. The flap will be blank on one side and have four steps listed on the other side, as well as a sticky strip used to seal the envelope.

Postal voters who are overseas will also receive a separate white outer envelope.

People voting from outside of their home division or voting by post must complete a declaration so that their entitlement to vote (their enrolment) can be checked before their vote is added to the count.

We have strict procedures that allow us to both check that an elector is entitled to vote, and to ensure that there is no way a voter's vote can be identified. As such, for postal voters the declaration is on the outside of the postal vote envelope.

Electors concerned about their privacy may return their correctly completed postal vote envelope (with ballot papers sealed inside) inside an outer envelope of their own. The outer envelope can be addressed to the reply paid address printed on the postal vote envelope. It will not require a postage stamp if posted within Australia.

Electoral law allows political parties or candidates to mail postal vote applications to you along with candidate and political party election campaign material.

If you have received a postal vote application sent by a political party you do not have to use the application. If you complete the application and return it to the party or candidate, they must then forward your form to the AEC for processing.

However, you are not required to send the application back to the party or candidate. Instead you can return it directly to the AEC by mailing it to:

Australian Electoral Commission
Reply Paid 9867
[your capital city]

Or by using our scanned postal vote upload facility.

If you do not want to fill out forms provided by a party or candidate, you can apply to the AEC directly. The AEC does not include political party material with any of the forms or printed information that we send to voters.

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