State of Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Lancaster County Incompletely Dated Mail-in Ballots Challenge

Pennsylvania Alliance for Retired Americans v. Lancaster County Board of Elections

Lawsuit filed by the Pennsylvania Alliance for Retired Americans (PARA) against the Lancaster County Board of Elections challenging the county’s rejection of several mail-in ballots missing the final two digits of the year as wrongly dated. In Pennsylvania, mail-in ballots must include a handwritten date of the day the ballot was completed to be counted. In 2023, the Pennsylvania Department of State redesigned the absentee ballot outer envelope with blank boxes for the month and day followed by “20 _ _” for the year to address voter confusion and discourage voters from accidentally writing their date of birth. However, PARA claims that several voters forgot to include the “24” of the year “2024” when filling out the redesigned envelope in the April 2024 primary election. In response to this issue, the department of state issued a guidance advising all county boards of elections not to reject ballots missing the “24” in the year field as undated or misdated. PARA alleges that Lancaster County’s board of elections did not follow this guidance and rejected ballots missing the last two digits of the year. PARA claims that these rejections violate the non-discrimination provision of the state constitution and argues that voters need only handwrite the month and day to satisfy the statutory date requirement for mail-in ballots. PARA asks the court to prohibit Lancaster County’s Board of Elections from rejecting ballots missing the last two digits of the year.

STATUS: PARA filed their complaint on June 7, 2024. The Lancaster County Board of Elections has not responded yet.

Case Documents

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