How to make sure your vote was counted in North Carolina in the 2020 election

North Carolina elections officials on Thursday reminded Election Day voters that it may take a few weeks before their "voter history" is updated to reflect their recent vote.

"If you voted in person and inserted your ballot into a tabulator, your selections were immediately recorded on a memory card, and your votes were reported on election night as part of the unofficial results," said Karen Brinson Bell, executive director of the State Board of Elections. "We respectfully ask that voters trust their bipartisan boards of elections across North Carolina. We are here to make sure your votes count, and they will."

Why is it taking so long to count votes? The answer is simple

The State Board of Elections and county boards of elections have been inundated with questions from voters about whether their ballot was counted in the 2020 general election.

Here's how you can check if your vote was counted:

If you voted in person on Election Day



When you inserted your ballot into a tabulator, your selections were recorded on a media card in the tabulator. These results were counted and reported publicly on election night.

For further confirmation that your ballot was counted, use the Voter Search tool.

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Your ballot status will show up in the "Voter History" section as soon as your county completes the post-election process of assigning voter history to your record. This may take a couple of weeks or longer after the election.

If you voted in person during the one-stop early voting period from October 15-31



You can find that your vote counted in the "Your Absentee Ballot" section of the Voter Search database.

Under North Carolina law, all early votes - by-mail or in-person - are considered absentee votes. If you voted during the early voting period, your "Absentee Status" will show "VALID RETURN," the "Return Method" will be "IN PERSON" and your "Return Status" will be "ACCEPTED."

Your ballot status also will show up in the "Voter History" section as soon as your county completes the post-election process of assigning voter history to your record. This may take a couple of weeks or longer.

If you voted absentee by-mail



Once your ballot is received by your county board of elections, you can find that your vote counted in the "Your Absentee Ballot" section of the Voter Search database. "Absentee Status" will show "VALID RETURN," the "Return Method" will be "MAIL" and your "Return Status" will be "ACCEPTED" or "ACCEPTED - CURED".

Your ballot status will also show up in the "Voter History" section as soon as your county completes the post-election process of assigning voter history to your record. This may take a couple of weeks or longer.

If you cast a provisional ballot



You will be able to check the status of your ballot 10 days after the election through the Provisional Search tool. You must fill out all four fields in the form and click "Search."
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