Yes, USPS will deliver mail-in ballots with insufficient postage

As Election Day approached, a VERIFIED viewer asked if the postal service would deliver their ballot even with insufficient postage. USPS says yes.

Midterm election season is officially underway across the country. This year, millions of people will mail in their ballots on or before November 8th. For many voters, this means having to calculate how much postage they need to use before voting through. post office.

Viewer VERIFY Anne emailed our team to ask if mail-in ballots require two stamps. She also wants to know if her ballot will count if insufficient postage is placed on the ballot envelope.

This report is part of a series of stories ahead of the midterm elections. If you have any questions about the election, email us at or message us on social media @verifythis.


Does the postal service deliver mailed ballots with insufficient postage?



This is the truth.

Yes, the postal service will deliver postage-free mail ballots.


The postal service will deliver a ballot by mail even if it has full or unpaid postage. This is because it is USPS policy that requires the postal service not to delay delivery of completed absentee ballot materials, including mailed ballots, according to Martha Johnson, spokeswoman. member of the USPS and the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL).

“We are proactively working with state and local election officials on mailing requirements, including postage payments,” Johnson told VERIFY. “In the event that a ballot enters the mail without the appropriate amount of postage, the Post Office will deliver the ballot and will then attempt to collect postage from the appropriate Board of Elections.”

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So it’s true that the postal service will mail ballots if they don’t have enough postage – but election officials, and your tax dollars, may end up generating bills for missing stamps .

According to the NCSL, there is no postage required to mail a ballot in 19 states and Washington, DC. However, if you live elsewhere, you may be responsible for postage.

That’s because each state, or local Board of Elections, determines whether to provide voters with a prepaid prepaid envelope for mail-in ballots, according to Johnson. They may also require voters to apply their own appropriate postage rates.

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Many ballots by mail require only a first-class stamp. However, you will likely need a second stamp if your ballot is bulky and weighs more than an ounce. USPS requires election officials to notify voters of the amount of postage needed, if any, Johnson said.

If you plan to mail your ballot, state and local election authorities in your area can provide information about specific processes, rules, deadlines, and policies for where you live. For local voting and registration questions, click here to find the contact information for your local elections office. For statewide voting instructions, visit for easy access to your state’s official elections office website.

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