Candidate Filing

As a candidate, you will be required to file papers during the candidate filing period. The papers you need to complete as candidate are known as the Candidate Application Packet and could include forms such as Nomination Papers, Declaration of Candidacy, Financial Disclosure Forms, and others.

Where To File
It is important to know who is your filing Election Official and where to file:

  • If you are running for a Special District or a School District, the County Election Office is your filing office.
  • If you are seeking public office in a city or town, the City Clerk is your filing office.
  • If you are running for a statewide office or federal office, you will file with the Election Office of your county of residence unless other residency rules apply.
  • For specific information, visit our Current Election page or call our office at (925) 335-7874.
General Qualifications
  • Candidates must be 18 years old by the next election, be a citizen of the U.S., must be a registered voter, and must have not been convicted of designated crimes as specified in the state constitution and laws.
  • Other than running for U.S. Representative and Superior Court Judge, you must be a registered voter in the district or city you wish to run for.
Other Requirements

    As a candidate you must complete and file the Candidate Application Packet by the filing deadline. Candidate Application Packets will be available for pickup at the Elections office 113 days before the election.

  • Remember to start the process early in the Candidate Filing Period in order to meet the filing deadline. The filing period is only 25 days, starting 113 days before the election and ending 88 days before the election.
  • Some offices require nomination petitions to be filed in order to qualify. Candidates should pick up their nomination papers early in the Candidate Filing Period to allow enough time for signature gathering. The following offices require nomination petition signatures:
    • United States Senate Offices require no less than 65 and no more than 100 signatures.
    • United States Congress Offices require no less than 40 and no more than 60 signatures.
    • State Offices require no less than 40 and no more than 60 signatures.
    • County Offices require no less than 20 and no more than 40 signatures.
    • Superior Court Judgeships require no less than 20 and no more than 40 signatures.
    • Municipal Offices require no less than 20 and no more than 40 signatures.
    • East Bay Municipal Utility District requires no less than 10 and no more than 20 signatures.
    • Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District requires 50 signatures.
    • East Bay Regional Park District requires 50 signatures.
  • All judicial candidates must file a Declaration of Intent and pay a fee during the Declaration of Intent period which starts 127 days before the election and ends 118 days before the election. Failure to do so disqualifies the judicial candidate from running for office during the Nomination Period. If the judicial incumbent does not file the Declaration of Intent, the period is extended five calendar days for non-incumbents candidates only.
Candidate Guide
A Candidate Guide is published before the election for the contests that will be on the ballot. The Guide gives you vital information on running your campaign; filing requirements, qualifications, deadlines, fees, political advertising, reports and more. This guide is for general information only and does not have the force and effect of law, regulation or rule.

2014 Candidate Guide

Filing Fees
The following offices have filing fees:

  • Federal
  • United States Senate (Filing fee is 2% of the salary)
    United States Congress (Filing fee is 1% of the salary)

  • State
  • Governor (Filing fee is 2% of the salary)
    Lt. Governor (Filing fee is 2% of the salary)
    Secretary of State (Filing fee is 2% of the salary)
    Controller (Filing fee is 2% of the salary)
    Treasurer (Filing fee is 2% of the salary)
    Attorney General (Filing fee is 2% of the salary)
    Insurance Commissioner (Filing fee is 2% of the salary)
    Board of Equalization, District 1 (Filing fee is 1% of the salary)
    State Supt. of Public Instruction (Filing fee is 2% of the salary)
    Members of the Assembly (Filing fee is 1% of the salary)

  • County
  • Filing fee for all County Offices is 1% of the salary.

    • Superior Court Judges
    • Board of Supervisors
    • Assesor
    • Auditor-Controller
    • Clerk-Recorder
    • District Attorney-Public Administrator
    • Sheriff-Coroner
    • Treasurer-Tax Collector
    • County Superintendent of Schools

Signatures can be collected to pay or reduce the filing fee, signatures can be collected starting 158 days before the election and must be filed 103 days before the election.

Miscellaneous Filing Information
  • The ballot designation is a three word maximum description of your profession or occupation. It appears next to your name on the ballot.
  • The candidate statement is a statement of the candidate’s personal background and qualifications. It is published at the candidate’s expense in the Sample Ballot and Voter Information Pamphlet, which is mailed to every voter in the county.