•If you plan to absentee vote or mail-in vote – they are different – in Missouri, you may need to have your ballot notarized. Here’s help finding a notary.
The Missouri voting system is one of few in the country that requires voters to submit a notarized mail-in and absentee ballot. Anyone in Missouri can request a mail-in ballot, but they must be notarized and they MUST BE MAILED, they cannot be dropped off at the poll.
Absentee ballots in Missouri are available to individuals in two categories: those who need their ballots notarized and those who don’t.
Those who don’t need to have their ballot notarized are:
Individuals who are incapacitated or confined due to illness and in 2020,
An individual who has contracted coronavirus or is at-risk due to any of the following:
•Is age 65 or older
•Lives in a long-term care facility
•Has chronic lung disease/asthma,
•Has a serious heart conditions
•has chronic kidney disease and is undergoing dialysis
•Has liver disease.
Individuals who can vote absentee, who must have their ballot notarized include those that are voting absentee due to:
• Religious beliefs or practices
• Working as an election worker
• Incarceration, if still eligible to vote
• Certified participation in an address confidentiality program
• Absence on Election Day from your election jurisdiction.
Finding a notary
With absentee voting expecting to reach historic numbers, there are going to be a large number of individuals in need of a notary. Thankfully, there are a number of organizations and individuals providing notary services for free.
Curbside Notary is an organization that’s partnering with local coffee shops and restaurants to offer free ballot notarizations. Curbside has set up five permanent notary sites with specific times, ending Oct. 25. The permanent locations include, Heirloom Bakery, 401 E 63rd, KCMO; Soulcentricitea, 1106 E 30th, KCMO; Blip Roasters, 1301 Woodswether Rd, KCMO; Spokes Café & Cyclery, 1200 Washington Suite B, KCMO; Lifted Spirits Distillery, 1734 Cherry St, KCMO. For notary times at each of these locations and visit their website: www.curbsidenotary.org.
They will also hold 18 one-time events, from Oct. 5 through Oct. 18. For voters that are still concerned with getting out of their car, car-side notary appointments will be available, but you must sign up prior to the event. Visit Curbside Notary’s website, for specific dates and times of notarizing events.
Voters Helping Voters, in partnership with KC Parks, is holding two more, free ballot notarization events at outside KC Parks community centers. You can have your ballot notarized on Sat., Oct. 10, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Southeast, Garrison and Kansas City North community centers. The last event is Sat., Oct. 17, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Tony Aguirre, Marlborough and Brush Creek community centers.
To help eliminate the cost of the notary as a deterrent to voting, the KC Board of Election Commissioners also compiled a list of over 40 legal notaries who have agreed to provide their services for free for voters. You can find this list at hwww.kceb.org/voters/absenteevoting.
Also don’t forget to mail your ballot in time for it to be received no later than 5 p.m. on Tues., Nov. 3.