Elections New Brunswick, Canada

Marking A Ballot


Can I put my own ballot in the tabulation machine or ballot box?
Can I take my ballot outside the polling station?
Is a ballot rejected if another mark is used?
What is a spoiled ballot?

What if I make a mistake when I vote?
What is the correct way to mark a ballot?
What is the order of names on the ballot?
Can the ballot box be brought out to my car?
Does Elections New Brunswick have Braille Ballots?
How can I protest my vote/decline my ballot?

Q.  Can I put my own ballot in the tabulation machine or ballot box?

A.  Yes. A Tabulation Machine Operator will first verify the initials on the ballot, and normally place the ballot into the tabulation machine for the voter, to remove any apprehension voters sometimes will have, and to respond to any error messages that might appear, but an elector may insert his/her own ballot if desired. After the tabulation machine reads the ballot, the paper falls into the ballot box.



Q.  Can I take my ballot outside the polling station?

A.  No. Once a ballot is issued, it either has to be put into the ballot box or returned to the Ballot Issuing Officer as a “spoiled ballot”.



Q.  Is a ballot rejected if another mark is used?

A.  A ballot is not rejected as long as the mark fills in enough of the circle for the machine to read properly; any mark outside the oval is not read by the machine.



Q.  What is a spoiled ballot?

What if I make a mistake when I vote?


A.  A ballot is “Spoiled” when it is marked in error by the voter or damaged in printing. It can be returned to the Ballot Issuing Officer and exchanged for another. The spoiled ballot does not go into the ballot box.



Q.  What is the correct way to mark a ballot?

A.  Mark the ballot with an "X" or fill in the oval beside the name of the candidate chosen. A special marker is provided at the poll.



Q.  What is the order of names on the ballot?

A.  In local elections, the names are printed with all the candidates for one contest together, then in alphabetical order by last names.



Q.  Can the ballot box be brought out to my car?

A.  In the event that an elector is designated to vote at a polling station that is not physically accessible by the elector, and has not obtained a transfer certificate, the elector or someone on his or her behalf may request that the Poll Supervisor of that polling station assist him or her to vote at the curbside.



Q.  Does Elections New Brunswick have Braille Ballots?

A.  Braille facsimiles of ballots are only used in Provincial elections (for an MLA). Because of the complex municipal ballot, they will not work in municipal elections. The audio vote solution at the Returning Offices, has Braille on the device for selecting the choice of candidates.



Q.  How can I protest my vote/decline my ballot?

A.  You may receive a ballot and choose to mark more candidates than are permitted, in which case your vote for that contest(s) will be rejected, or you may choose to mark no candidates at all, and deposit an unmarked ballot.

Be aware that the tabulation machines are programmed to beep and give a voter a “second chance” if they have over voted for a contest on the ballot.

There is no provision to decline a ballot in NB.