CANDIDATE FILING
If you want to declare your candidacy for a federal or state office, please contact the Secretary of State's Office. If you want to declare your candidacy for a city office, you will contact your local election authority. Candidates for elective office "file" for that office with an appropriate officer. State level (including legislative) and Congressional level candidates file with the Secretary of State. The times of filing are fixed by law. Please see Chapter 115 of the Missouri Statutes (sections 305 to 405) for complete information.

Federal or State Offices

The qualifications for each office are listed in either the State Constitution or state law pertaining to that particular office. Contact the Secretary of State's Office for further information by calling (573) 751-2301 or email [email protected].

County Offices

Candidates for County offices may obtain further information from the appropriate county officer. 

City Offices

Persons interested in City office should contact the City Clerk's office at 

Other Offices

School board, or Metropolitan Junior College board membership should contact the specific Board Secretary for more information.

For more information on how to file to run for office, please visit:

Missouri Secretary of State/Elections/For Candidates

Missouri Ethics Commission

CAMPAIGN FINANCE/ETHICS

The Missouri Ethics Commission (MEC) receives reports and is charged with enforcement of: campaign finance, conflict of interest, lobbying and personal finance disclosures. The enforcement includes investigating complaints and auditing filed reports. The Commission also issues advisory opinions. Its mission is to serve the public interest by assisting and educating the citizens of Missouri, public officials, lobbyists, and individuals participating in public elections while consistently and uniformly enforcing campaign finance, conflict of interest and lobbying laws.

How does a candidate report his or her contributions and expenditures?

  • Missouri Campaign Finance Disclosure Law, Chapter 130 RSMo provides information about disclosure reports required by law. You may wish to contact the Missouri Ethics Commission at (800) 392-8660, the St. Louis County Board of Elections (314) 615-1833, or review the Missouri Revised Statutes to learn more about the law.

Click here to review the MEC's requirements for:

  • Establishing a campaign committee
  • Filing a personal financial disclosure statement
  • Filing quarterly campaign finance reports
  • Filing 8-day, 30-day, and 40-day reports
  • Terminating a campaign committee

For more information on campaign finance and ethics, please visit the Missouri Ethics Commission at www.mec.mo.gov.

See the Forms/Applications section for commonly requested forms. Hard copies of these forms may be obtained from our offices. 

WRITE-IN CANDIDATES

A write-in candidate is an individual whose name does not appear on the ballot and has filed a declaration of intent to be a write-in candidate for elective office with the proper election authority. The write-in candidate must notify the proper filing officer of the intention to be a write-in candidate prior to 5:00 p.m. on the second Friday immediately preceding the Election Day (115.453 RSMo). If there are no candidates filed for an elective office, a declaration of intent does not need to be filed.

Qualifications 

  • Must be a resident and registered voter in the jurisdiction they are running in
  • Must have no outstanding campaign disclosure reports due from any prior elections

Click here to download a sample of the Write-In Candidate Declaration Form (Official form must be filled out in person at )

*Please note not every election allows for write-in candidates. Please check with your local election authority for further information on write-in candidates.

For more information on write-in candidates, please visit the Secretary of State's website

PETITIONS

The Election Board verifies signatures for state and local government entities and local school boards. For more information on how to start a petition, please contact your state, local governing agency or school board.

What are the rules for the petitioning process?

Citizens of the State of Missouri may petition:

  • To amend the Constitution of Missouri 

In order to amend the state constitution, 8% of the registered voters in 2/3rds of the Congressional Districts of Missouri must sign the petitions. They are to be filed with the Secretary of State.

  • To enact a new State Law 

In order to enact a state law by initiative, 5% of the registered voters in 2/3rds of the Congressional Districts of Missouri must sign the petitions. They are to be filed with the Secretary of State.

  • To vote on an existing law 

In order to vote on an existing law ("Referendum"), 5% of the registered voters in 2/3rds of the Congressional Districts of Missouri must sign the petitions. They are to be filed with the Secretary of State.

For additional information regarding statewide petition opportunities, consult the Secretary of State's website.

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