Becoming a State Candidate

OfficeQualificationsFiling Dates* 2016 Filing Fee ** Term
Governor U.S. citizen; 30 years old at time of election; Resident of Utah for 5 years; Qualified voter at time of election Between March 11, 2016 and 5pm on March 17, 2016 (Lt. Governor's Office)* $800.00 4 Years
Lt. Governor U.S. citizen; 30 years old at time of election; Resident of Utah for 5 years; Qualified voter at time of election Between March 11, 2016 and 5pm on March 17, 2016 (Lt. Governor's Office)* $725.00 4 Years
Attorney General U.S. citizen; 25 years old at time of election; Resident of Utah for 5 years; Admitted to practice before the Utah Supreme Court; Good standing with the Utah Bar Between March 11, 2016 and 5pm on March 17, 2016 (Lt. Governor's Office)* $762.50 4 Years
State Treasurer U.S. citizen; 25 years old at time of election; Resident of Utah for 5 years; Qualified voter at time of election Between March 11, 2016 and 5pm on March 17, 2016 (Lt. Governor's Office)* $725.00 4 Years
State Auditor U.S. citizen; 25 years old at time of election; Resident of Utah for 5 years; Qualified voter at time of election Between March 11, 2016 and 5pm on March 17, 2016 (Lt. Governor's Office)* $725.00 4 Years
State School Board Resident of the state school board district in which the person is seeking election for at least one year as of the date of the election; Qualified voter at time of election Between January 4, 2016 and 5 pm on March 17, 2016 (County in which the candidate resides)* $65.00 4 Years
State Senate U.S. citizen; 25 years old; Resident of Utah for 3 consecutive years; 6 consecutive month resident of the Senate district at filing deadline; Qualified voter at time of election Between March 11, 2016 and 5pm on March 17, 2016 (County in which the candidate resides)* $111.43 4 Years
State House of Representatives U.S. citizen; 25 years old; Resident of Utah for 3 consecutive years; 6 consecutive month resident of the House district at filing deadline; Qualified voter at time of election Between March 11, 2016 and 5pm on March 17, 2016 (County in which the candidate resides)* $80.71 2 Years

*These are filing dates for a declaration of candidacy. Candidates that wish to collect signatures must file an "intent to gather signatures" form between January 4, 2016 and 5pm on March 17, 2016.

**filing fees are subject to change

 

Partisan Candidates

All partisan candidates may get on the primary election ballot by collecting signatures, going through the party's convention, or both. Follow the checklist below to become a candidate:

  • January 4, 2016 - 5pm on March 17, 2016. Candidates that collect signatures must file an "intent to gather signatures" form with the appropriate election official to begin collecting signatures.
  • March 11, 2016 - 5pm on March 17, 2016. File a declaration of candidacy form, in-person, with the appropriate election official.
  • 14 days before the candidate's convention. Candidates that collect signatures must submit petition signatures to the appropriate election official 14 days before the candidate's convention (even if the candidate is not participating in convention).

Candidates that collect signatures must obtain the following number of valid signatures:

  • Statewide Office & U.S. Senate: 28,000
  • U.S. House of Representatives: 7,000
  • Utah State Senate: 2,000
  • Utah State House: 1,000
  • County Offices: 3% of voters allowed to vote in the party's primary. (3% numbers can be found here)

Candidates should refer to the table below to determine where they should file paperwork and submit signatures. Legislative candidates should take note that they can no longer declare candidacy at the Lieutenant Governor's office.

 

CandidatesDeclaration of Intent to Gather SignaturesDeclaration of CandidacySubmit SignaturesVerify Signatures
Federal Candidates Lt. Governor Lt. Governor Lt. Governor Lt. Governor
Statewide Candidates Lt. Governor Lt. Governor Lt. Governor Lt. Governor
Multi-County Candidates County Clerk of the county in which the candidate resides County Clerk of the county in which the candidate resides Lt. Governor Lt. Governor
Single-County Candidates County Clerk of the county in which the candidate resides County Clerk of the county in which the candidate resides County Clerk of the county in which the candidate resides County Clerk of the county in which the candidate resides

For more details on the new primary process, signature gathering, and becoming a candidate, please refer to our Frequently Asked Questions.

 

Unaffiliated Candidates

State School Board candidates are non-partisan. Candidates do not need to collect signatures, but they must declare candidacy between January 4, 2016 and 5 pm on March 17, 2016.

All other candidates who do not wish to affiliate with a ballot-approved political party may appear on the ballot by submitting a petition. Candidates for the office of Governor must submit a petition with the signatures of at least 1,000 registered Utah voters. Candidates for the Utah State House of Representatives or Utah State Senate must submit a petition with the signatures of at least 300 registered voters residing within the political division or at least 5% of the registered voters residing within a political division, whichever is less, when the nomination is for an office to be filled by the voters of any political division smaller than the state. The names on the petition must be verified by the county clerk(s) as registered voters. Holographic (physical) signatures are required. Electronic signatures of any kind are not acceptable.

After the petition has been verified, candidates for state office are required to file the petition and a Certificate of Nomination for candidates with the Lt. Governor's Office between the second Friday and third Thursday (5pm) in March in even numbered years.

Unaffiliated candidates must pay the same filing fees as all other state office candidates.

 

Write-in Candidates

To become a valid write-in candidate for a state office, an individual must file a Declaration of Write-In Candidacy no later than 60 days before the regular general election.

Candidates for statewide offices must file the declaration in person with the Lieutenant Governor's Office. All other state office candidates may file the declaration in person either with the county clerk in their county of residence or with the Lieutenant Governor's Office. Write-in candidates must meet the qualifications required for the state office they are seeking. Filing the Declaration of Write-In Candidacy means that write-in votes for the candidate will be counted. The candidate's name will not appear on the ballot.