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Friday, May 7, 2021

Frequently Asked Questions


 Click on a category to the left to filter the list of FAQs below.

How do I challenge a candidate?

To challenge a candidate, you must file a challenge petition in court no later than 5:00 p.m. on the 10th business day after the candidate Nomination Petition submission deadline. The challenge petition must specifically list the reasons for the challenge. If signatures on a candidate’s Nomination Petitions are being challenged, the challenge must specifically identify the Nomination Petition page and line number for each signature being challenged, and the reasons why the signatures are being challenged. For more information see A.R.S. §16-351 and A.R.S. §16-351.01.

Any candidate in any election can be challenged by any registered voter.

How do I complete the top portion of my petition?

The purpose of the petition is to tell people who you are and what you are running for. Read the petition language carefully, and fill in the information requested in the blanks provided. Make sure the top portion of the petition is filled out with the correct election date, name of the district and office you are running for.

While we want to make sure you are as informed as possible, we cannot tell you how to fill out your paperwork. If you need help, you can consult your county political party office, or seek advice from an attorney.

How many signatures do I need to get?

The number of nominating signatures you must get varies by position and party. Signature requirements are based on the voter registration totals reported on January 2nd of the election year. Before January 2nd, only “Unofficial” signature requirements are available.

I want to review my opponent's petitions. What do I do?

Nomination Petitions are available for public inspection and purchase from the Elections Department. To check the signatures on candidate petitions against the Voter Registration records, you must:

  1. Submit a Public Data Request Form with the Elections office.
  2. Purchase copies of the desired candidate’s petitions from our office at $0.25 per page.
  3. Schedule an appointment with the Voter Registration Department for use of their public computer.

If you want to look at another candidate’s petitions and do not want copies, you can do so under direct supervision of Elections Department staff, but you cannot use this option if you want to check the signatures against the Voter Registration records.

I’ve decided to run for office, what do I need to know?

  1. First, find out who your filing office is and where they are located. Not all candidates file at the County Elections office. It depends on which elected position you’re interested in. See also: Where do I get my candidate paperwork and where do I file? (below)
  2. Pull a candidate packet. The packet contains all the forms and information you need to run for office. See also: Where do I get my candidate paperwork and where do I file? (below)
  3. Register your committee (if applicable) by filing a Statement of Organization. You can form a committee at any time. For more information see A.R.S. §16-905.
    If you spend or collect, in aggregate, more than $1,300, you must file a Statement of Organization. You are then required to file quarterly and pre-election Campaign Finance Reports through the election, and once more when the committee terminates. See also: Campaign Contributions and Campaign Finance Report Dates.
  4. File a Statement of Interest - This form must be filed before you start circulating petitions. 
  5. Circulate your petitions and gather signatures. See also: Petitions.
  6. File your paperwork with the appropriate filing office. See also: Where do I get my candidate paperwork and where do I file? (below) 

When can I begin gathering signatures?

You can begin collecting nominating petition signatures at any time after filing your Statement of Interest. See also I’ve decided to run for office, what do I need to know?

When do I file my petitions?

Petitions are filed between 150 and 120 days before the election. Exact dates can be found on our website under Elections & Results. Click on the Election for a list of important dates, including when candidates file.

“Independent” candidates (not registered with one of the political parties recognized in Yavapai County) do not run in the Primary Election, but are still required to file their Nomination Paper and petitions at the same time as candidates who are running in the Primary.

PLEASE BE AWARE: The last week of the candidate filing period is busy for the filing office and for candidates. If you choose to file during that time period, please be prepared to wait in line.

Who can sign my petitions?

Signatures must be obtained from qualified electors who are eligible to vote for the candidate whose nomination petition they are signing. If you are running for a County office, signers are registered in the district you are running for, registered with your same political party, or registered “independents.” If you are running for a Special District, anyone registered to vote in your district can sign your petitions.

PLEASE NOTE: If you are running for a Special District that crosses into another county, you can collect signatures from voters in the other county, but you will want separate petition pages for each County.

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