IMPORTANT INFORMATION: The Government of Israel and the Palestinian Authority have announced restrictions on movements and social distancing to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). As a result of these measures and the impact on staffing, the American Citizens Services sections at the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem and the its Branch Office in Tel Aviv have reduced operations.
Voters should consult the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s COVID-19 information page for the most recent information on how the crisis response is affecting voting.
FVAP encourages overseas U.S. citizens to take these individual actions to help overcome any potential disruptions to host country mail operations:
- Register and request your ballot through FVAP.gov: Use the online Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) at FVAP.gov to simultaneously register and request an absentee ballot.
- Consider asking that your ballot be sent to you electronically: Voters in who are living in countries currently experiencing, or likely to experience, mail disruptions should select an electronic option for receiving their blank ballot from their election official. Not all states and counties allow electronic receipt of blank ballots; check FVAP.gov or ask your state voting office if this is an option for you.
- Consider state ballot submission alternatives: Refer to your state’s instructions on FVAP.gov for ways to return your completed ballot. Most states allow voters to submit ballots online.
Given current conditions, voters are strongly encouraged to submit ballots directly to their home states via email or fax where possible. Where mail-in ballots are the only option, please consider using a courier service to send your ballot directly to your home state to be counted. Learn more about your state’s voting regulations at the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s website (https://www.fvap.gov/).
As a last resort, eligible voters are permitted to drop off ballots at the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem or Embassy Branch Office in Tel Aviv. Please note that it can take up to four weeks for mail to reach its destination if sent by diplomatic pouch. Ballots can be dropped off at the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy Jerusalem from 9:00AM-11:00AM Monday, Wednesday, and Friday or at the Embassy Branch Office Tel Aviv from 8:00AM-11:00AM on Tuesday and Thursday.
You have a few methods for submitting your ballot from overseas.
Send your electronic ballot via email or fax
Most states provide email and fax options for voters, so make sure to review your state specific ballot submission instructions.
Send paper ballots via the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem or the Branch Office in Tel Aviv
If you intend to send your paper ballot via the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem or Branch Office Tel Aviv, contact the relevant voting team in advance — JerusalemACS@state.gov or TelAvivACS@state.gov — to set up an appointment. Please be aware of the applicable security regulations for both facilities: https://il.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/what-to-bring-to-an-appointment/
Send paper ballots via express courier service
If your state’s deadlines are coming up fast, consider utilizing an express courier company such as UPS, DHL, or FedEx.