§3-3-4. Assistance to voter in voting an absent voter's ballot by personal appearance; penalties


Published: 2015

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WEST VIRGINIA CODE











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WVC 3 - 3 - 4

§3-3-4. Assistance to voter in voting an absent voter's ballot by

personal appearance; penalties.

(a) Any registered voter who requires assistance to vote by

reason of blindness, disability, advanced age or inability to read

and write may be given assistance by a person of the voter's

choice: Provided, That the assistance may not be given by the

voter's present or former employer or agent of that employer, by

the officer or agent of a labor union of which the voter is a past

or present member or by a candidate on the ballot.

(b) Any voter who requests assistance in voting an absent

voter's ballot but who is determined by the official designated to

supervise and conduct absentee voting not to be qualified for

assistance under the provisions of this section and section

thirty-four, article one of this chapter may vote a challenged

absent voter's ballot with the assistance of any person authorized

to render assistance pursuant to this section. The official

designated to supervise and conduct absentee voting shall in this

case challenge the absent voter's ballot on the basis of his or her

determination that the voter is not qualified for assistance.

(c) Any one or more of the election commissioners or poll

clerks in the precinct to which an absent voter's ballot has been

sent may challenge the ballot on the ground that the voter received

assistance in voting it when in his or their opinion: (1) The person who received the assistance in voting the absent voter's

ballot did not require assistance; or (2) the person who provided

the assistance in voting did not make an affidavit as required by

this section. The election commissioner or poll clerk or

commissioners or poll clerks making a challenge shall enter the

challenge and reason for the challenge on the form and in the

manner prescribed or authorized by this article.

(d) Before entering the voting booth or compartment, the

person who intends to provide a voter assistance in voting shall

make an affidavit, the form of which is to be prescribed by the

secretary of state, that he or she will not in any manner request

or seek to persuade or induce the voter to vote any particular

ticket or for any particular candidate or for or against any public

question and that he or she will not keep or make any memorandum or

entry of anything occurring within the voting booth or compartment

and that he or she will not, directly or indirectly, reveal to any

person the name of any candidate voted for by the voter or which

ticket he or she had voted or how he or she had voted on any public

question or anything occurring within the voting booth or

compartment or voting machine booth, except when required pursuant

to law to give testimony as to the matter in a judicial proceeding.

(e) In accordance with instructions issued by the secretary of

state, the official designated to supervise and conduct absentee voting shall provide a form entitled "List of Assisted Voters",

prescribed by the secretary of state, which list is to be divided

into two parts. Part A is to be entitled "Unchallenged Assisted

Voters" and Part B is to be entitled "Challenged Assisted Voters".

Under Part A, the official designated to supervise and conduct

absentee voting shall enter the name of each voter receiving

unchallenged assistance in voting an absent voter's ballot, the

address of the voter assisted, the nature of the disability which

qualified the voter for assistance in voting an absent voter's

ballot, the name of the person providing the voter with assistance

in voting an absent voter's ballot, the fact that the person

rendering the assistance in voting made and subscribed to the oath

required by this section and the signature of the official

designated to supervise and conduct absentee voting certifying to

the fact that he or she had determined that the voter who received

assistance in voting an absent voter's ballot was qualified to

receive the assistance under the provisions of this section. Under

Part B, the official designated to supervise and conduct absentee

voting shall enter the name of each voter receiving challenged

assistance in voting, the address of the voter receiving challenged

assistance, the reason for the challenge and the name of the person

providing the challenged voter with assistance in voting. At the

close of the period provided for voting an absent voter's ballot by personal appearance, the official designated to supervise and

conduct absentee voting shall make and subscribe to an oath on the

list that the list is correct in all particulars; if no voter has

been assisted in voting an absent voter's ballot as provided in

this section, the official designated to supervise and conduct

absentee voting shall make and subscribe to an oath of that fact on

the list. The "List of Assisted Voters" is to be available for

public inspection in the office of the official designated to

supervise and conduct absentee voting during regular business hours

throughout the period provided for voting an absent voter's ballot

by personal appearance and, unless otherwise directed by the

secretary of state, the official shall transmit the list, together

with the affidavits, applications and absent voters' ballots, to

the precincts on election day.

(f) Following the election, the affidavits required by this

section from persons providing assistance in voting, together with

the "List of Assisted Voters", are to be returned by the election

commissioners to the clerk of the county commission, along with the

election supplies, records and returns, who shall make the oaths

and list available for public inspection and who shall preserve the

oaths and list for twenty-two months or, if under order of the

court, until their destruction or other disposition is authorized

or directed by the court.

(g) Any person making an affidavit required under the

provisions of this section who knowingly swears falsely in the

affidavit or any person who counsels or advises, aids or abets

another in the commission of false swearing under this section is

guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be

fined not more than one thousand dollars or confined in the county

or regional jail for a period of not more than one year, or both.

(h) Any person who provides a voter assistance in voting an

absent voter's ballot in the office of the official designated to

supervise and conduct absentee voting who is not qualified or

permitted by this section to provide assistance is guilty of a

misdemeanor and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not more

than one thousand dollars or imprisoned in the county or regional

jail for a period of not more than one year, or both.

(i) Any official designated to supervise and conduct absentee

voting, election commissioner or poll clerk who authorizes or

allows a voter to receive or to have received unchallenged

assistance in voting an absent voter's ballot when the voter is

known to the official designated to supervise and conduct absentee

voting or election commissioner or poll clerk not to be or have

been authorized by the provisions of this section to receive or to

have received assistance in voting is guilty of a misdemeanor and,

upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not more than one thousand dollars or imprisoned in the county or regional jail for a period

of not more than one year, or both.

(j) The term "physical disability" as used in this section

means blindness or a degree of blindness as will prevent the voter

from seeing the names on the ballot or amputation of both hands or

a disability of both hands that neither can be used to make cross

marks on the absent voter's ballot.





Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2015 Regular Session

The WV Code Online is an unofficial copy of the annotated WV Code, provided as a convenience. It has NOT been edited for publication, and is not in any way official or authoritative.