HOW TO BECOME A CANDIDATE IN FOUR EASY STEPS
STEP 1 – File Your Initial Paperwork
In order to become a candidate, you must file two forms with the filing/qualifying officer:
1.) Appointment of Campaign Treasurer and Designation of Campaign Depository Form DS-DE 9
- This form MUST be filed prior to opening the campaign depository, accepting contributions, making expenditures, or circulating petition forms (unless the candidate is a special district candidate who has not collected contributions and whose only expense is the signature verification fee. Rule 1S-2.045(5)(i)1.).
- Filing your intent for candidacy is not complete until filing forms are accepted and date/time stamped by the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections Office.
- Special District Candidates are not required to file DS-DE 9 or open a campaign account unless you collect contributions or make expenditures for anything other than the qualifying fee or petition verification fee (F.S. 99.061).
2.) Statement of Candidate Form DS-DE 84
- File this form no later than 10 days after filing the Appointment of Campaign Treasurer and Designation of Campaign Depository. It is also allowable to file this form along with the DS-DE 9.
- Judicial Candidates must also file a Statement of Candidate for Judicial Office DS-DE 83.
STEP 2 – Filing Campaign Finance Reports
Once an individual has filed a DS-DE 9 and becomes a candidate for office, he or she will be required to file regular campaign treasurer reports with the qualifying officer.
- These reports provide information on campaign contributions and expenditures.
- Generally, reports are submitted monthly, but as the election gets closer, they will be reported more often.
- Campaign finance reporting deadlines are included in candidate packets and at VotePalmBeach.gov.
STEP 3 – Choose One of the following Methods to Qualify as a Candidate
1.) Pay Qualifying Fee (F.S. 99.092)
Candidates that are filing for partisan office and affiliated with a political party have a qualifying fee based on 6% of the annual salary, as of July 1, 2023, of the office sought; candidates affiliated with no party or who are seeking a nonpartisan office pay 4% of the annual salary.
FEES BY OFFICE
- County Court Judge: TBD
- County Commission: Partisan - TBD; Nonpartisan - TBD
- School Board: TBD
- Port of Palm Beach: Partisan Candidate - TBD; Nonpartisan Candidate - TBD
- Special Districts and Community Development Districts: $25.00
2.) Petition Process Form DS-DE 104 (F.S. 99.095 & Rule 1S-2.045)
Candidates have an option to waive the qualifying fee by collecting petitions instead. The number of signatures required is based on the number of registered voters as of the immediately preceding general election.
The deadline for submitting petitions to the Supervisor of Elections for signature verification is NOON, the 28th day preceding the first day of the qualifying period for the office being sought.
Click here to download the Candidate Petition Handbook provided by the Florida Division of Elections.
PETITION SUBMISSION DEADLINES
- Judicial Candidates: Noon, Monday, March 25, 2024
- County & District Office Candidates: Noon, Monday, May 13, 2024
PETITION REQUIREMENTS BY OFFICE
District 1 – 1,615
District 3 – 1,039
District 5 – 1,635
District 7 – 1,245
District 1 - 1,650
District 2 - 1,066
District 5 - 1,500
Port of Palm Beach - 3,143
Special Districts and Community Development Districts – 25
Constitutional Offices - 10,037
3.) Write-In Candidate (F.S. 99.061 (4))
Candidates seeking election as a write-in candidate shall not be required to pay a qualifying fee or obtain signatures on petitions. A write-in candidate is not entitled to have his or her name printed on any ballot; however, space for a write-in candidate's name to be written in will be provided on the general election ballot
STEP 4 – Qualify During the Official Qualifying Period
1.) File two (2) forms with the filing/qualifying officer:
- Candidate Oath – Forms vary according to partisan, nonpartisan, school board, and judicial offices. Your name must be printed as you wish it to appear on the ballot and it must be notarized.
- Financial Disclosure Form (Form 1 or Form 6 depending on the office sought; Form 6 must be completed online with the Florida Commission on Ethics www.ethics.state.fl.us).
2.) Pay the qualifying fee or submit Official Petition Certification (exception – Write-In Candidates).
The fee must be paid by a properly executed check drawn on the campaign account. Petition Certification will be provided by the Supervisor of Elections after the completion of the signature verification process.
1ST QUALIFYING PERIOD: REPRESENTATIVE IN CONGRESS, STATE ATTORNEY, PUBLIC DEFENDER, JUSTICE OF SUPREME COURT, DISTRICT COURT OF APPEAL JUDGE, CIRCUIT COURT JUDGE, AND COUNTY COURT JUDGE:
- Noon, Monday, April 22, 2024 – Noon, Friday, April 26, 2024
- Note: Qualifying documents will begin being accepted on April 8, 2024. See Section 99.061(8), F.S.
2ND QUALIFYING PERIOD: STATE SENATOR, STATE REPRESENTATIVE, MULTI-COUNTY SPECIAL DISTRICTS, COUNTY & DISTRICT OFFICES:
- Noon, Monday, June 10, 2024 – Noon, Friday, June 14, 2024
- Note: Qualifying documents will begin being accepted on May 28, 2024. See Section 99.061(8), F.S.
A full list of offices and filing information can be found here.
THE PALM BEACH COUNTY SUPERVISOR OF ELECTIONS OFFICE IS THE FILING/QUALIFYING OFFICER FOR THE FOLLOWING:
- County Court Judge
- Clerk of the Circuit Court
- Property Appraiser
- Supervisor of Elections
- Tax Collector
- County Commission
- School Board
- Special Districts
- Community Development Districts (CDD)
Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections Main Office – 240 South Military Trail, West Palm Beach FL 33415; firstname.lastname@example.org.
For additional information, please contact the Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections Office at 561-656-6200.
Candidates, Political Committees and Political Party Executive Committees are required to submit regular financial reports that include contributions and expenditures, following the deadlines specified by the Florida Division of Elections:
2023 Calendar of Reporting Dates for Candidates and Political Committees
2023 Calendar of Reporting Dates for Political Parties
These reports are also known as Campaign Finance Reports and should be submitted to our office electronically. A Handbook for Candidates and Committees has step-by-step information on How to File Financial Reports Online.
Once you file for office, you will be listed as a candidate on our Announced Candidate page and your financial reports will be publicly posted on our website.
More information about Filing and Qualifying can be found on the Florida Division of Elections website.