The following are commonly asked questions about voting in Oregon.

What is Vote By Mail?

In 1998 voters passed a ballot measure directing all elections to be conducted by mail, commonly called Vote By Mail. Instead of using traditional polling places where voters go to cast ballots on election day, a ballot is mailed to each registered voter. The ballot is then returned to the county elections office and is counted on election day.

With Vote By Mail, how do I vote?

You must be registered to vote to receive a ballot. (Please see FAQ for more information.) A ballot will automatically be sent to all registered voters who are eligible to vote in the election. Once you vote your ballot, just place it in the optional secrecy sleeve, seal it and place it in the return envelope. Make sure to sign the return envelope after verifying your name and current residence address is correct. Then return the ballot envelope and mail it back (no postage needed), or use one of Oregon's official drop sites (updated list of official drop sites is available 20 days before each statewide election). Multnomah County Official Ballot Drop Box Sites are listed at Remember that all ballots must be received at the elections office or official drop site by 8:00 p.m. on election day. Postmarks do not count!

What if my ballot doesn't come?

If your ballot does not arrive within 5 days after they have been mailed, please call your county elections office. After checking your voter registration status the county elections office will send you a replacement ballot.

What if I make a mistake on my ballot?

If you make a mistake, clearly erase the incorrect mark then mark the correct oval. If you make a mistake that cannot be corrected or used a pen, you may call your county election office and request a replacement ballot. One will be mailed to you provided the request is received with sufficient time for mailing. Otherwise, you may pick up a replacement ballot in person at your county election office.

Will my vote still count if I don't vote on all measures and/or candidates?

Yes, the ballot will still be counted.

Can I change my mind after I've returned the ballot?

No. Your ballot has been cast as soon as you deposit it in the mailbox or at a drop site. After that, you cannot receive a new ballot to re-vote.

Will my vote still count if I forget to put my ballot into the optional secrecy sleeve?

Yes, the ballot will still be counted.

Do I have to return my ballot by mail?

No. You have the choice of mailing your ballot or returning it to any county election office or any designated drop site. The times and locations of drop sites in Multnomah County are listed in each Voters' Pamphlet or on our website. 

How do I know if my ballot was received?

You can check MyVote to see the status of your ballot. You can always call your county election office and ask if they received your ballot. A record is kept showing each voter whose ballot has been returned.

Can someone find out how I've voted?

No. All ballots are separated from the return envelope before the ballots are inspected. This process ensures confidentiality.

Can someone find out whether I've returned my ballot?

Yes. That information is public record.

When will election results be known?

Initial results are released at 8 p.m. on election night and will continue to be updated through election night until all ballots have been counted.

What if I have more questions?

Call Multnomah County Elections, 503-988-3720 or leave a comment, and our Elections staff will be glad to assist you.