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Filing & Qualifying for Office

This section of our website provides you with the tools you need to run for office, based on the Florida Election Laws. If you have any problems accessing our information or have questions about the process you need to follow to become a candidate in Hillsborough County, please contact our Candidate Services Liaison at (813) 744-5900, ext. 4465. 

OFFICES UP FOR ELECTION

Start here for an overview of filing and qualifying. There's a list of the offices we expect to be on the ballot in 2018, and information on which candidates file with our office and which file with the Florida Division of Elections. 

To find specific information on each of the offices up for election in 2018, click here.

For information on running for office in the 2019 City of Tampa Election, please click here.     

REQUIRED FORMS

To become a candidate for elected office, you must file form DS-DE9, Appointment of Campaign Treasurer and Designation of Campaign Depository, before accepting any contributions or making any campaign expenditures. You may not collect petitions until form DS-DE9 is filed with your filing officer. Within 10 days of filing form DS-DE9, you must file form DS-DE84, Statement of Candidate. Candidates for Judicial Office must within 10 days of filing form DS-DE9 also file form DS-DE83, Statement of Candidate for Judicial Office. Please click here for additional forms that you will need to file during your candidacy.

2018 QUALIFYING INFORMATION

The 2018 Primary Election will take place on August 28, 2018. The 2018 General Election will take place on November 6, 2018. 

Qualifying for all candidates who qualify with Hillsborough County, except County Court judges, begins at noon on June 18, 2018 and ends at noon on June 22, 2018.  Qualifying for County Court judges begins at noon on April 30, 2018 and ends at noon on May 4, 2018. During the election cycle, qualifying paperwork can be submitted up to 14 days prior to the qualifying period, but will not be processed until the start of qualifying. Qualifying packets will also be available from our office at that time. For more information about qualifying, review the fact sheet for the office you are interested in.

Qualifying By Fee - Information on qualifying fees for 2018 can be found here. These fees are due the week of qualifying. 

Qualifying By Petition - Information on petition requirements for 2018 can be found here. The State of Florida provides a Candidate Petition Handbook for additional reference. When collecting petitions, you must use the Florida Division of Elections Candidate Petition Form.


FINANCIAL REPORTS 

Candidates who have filed form DS-DE9, Appointment of Campaign Treasurer and Designation of Campaign Depository, are required to file regular financial reports, following the deadlines specified by the Florida Division of Elections:

Local candidates, please make sure to review the Online Financial Report Manual. All reports filed with our office must be submitted electronically. Our filing system allows you to enter information without using any additional software. However, you may  click here to see a list of approved software vendors  that are compatible with our electronic filing system. 

HELPFUL PUBLICATIONS 

There are several helpful publications, developed by the State Division of Elections, to help guide you through your candidacy. As a candidate, it is your responsibility review the Candidate and Treasurer Handbook and Florida Election Code, which will help guide you through your candidacy.  

COMPLAINTS & APPEALS

If you think someone is violating election law, you should file a complaint with the Florida Elections Commission.

CHARTER AMENDMENTS BY PETITION

For more information about the process to amend the Hillsborough County Charter, click here. For more information on the process to amend the City of Tampa Charter, click here.