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Virginia Department of Elections

For Immediate Release:

Contact For More Information:
Andrea M. Gaines
(804) 864-8928

Witness signature requirement waived for March 23, 2021 Special Election

RICHMOND – A court recently ruled that the absentee ballot witness signature requirement will not apply to the March 23, 2021 Special Election in the 38th Virginia Senate District.

Virginia Senate District 38 includes all of Bland, Buchanan, Dickenson, Russell, Pulaski, and Tazewell counties, Norton City, Radford City, and parts of Montgomery, Smyth and Wise counties.

Voters who believe they may not safely have a witness present while completing the absentee ballot for the March 23, 2021 Special Election are therefore not required to have a witness present or have a witness sign your ballot envelope. 

Ballots will not be rejected due to a missing witness signature. These instructions override any instructions on ballot envelopes regarding witness signatures. Updated instructions will be sent to voters who have requested an absentee ballot, but have yet to return the ballot.

For further information or questions, please contact your local registrar's office. You can find contact information on the Virginia Department of Elections website at