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Close this message COVID-19 - As recommended precautions continue to increase for COVID-19, the James E. Rudder Building will be closed to visitors and customers beginning Wednesday, March 18, 2020. The Office of the Secretary of State is committed to continuing to provide services to ensure business and public filings remain available 24/7 through our online business service, SOSDirect or use the new SOSUpload. Thank you in advance for your patience during this difficult time. Information on Testing Sites is now available.

Nominee of New Party or Party Without Ballot Access

NEW LAW: HB 2504 (2019) - If you are a member of a new party or if your party's candidates for statewide office in one of the last five previous general elections received less than two percent of the vote, your party must qualify for ballot access. (Sections 181.0041, 181.005, Texas Election Code). Your party must register (PDF) with the Secretary of State's Office by January 2, 2020, and needs the support of 83,435 qualified voters.

If you hope to become the nominee of a new party for a particular office, you must file an application for nomination (PDF) with the county or state party chair, as appropriate (see chart). The application must be filed no later than 6:00 p.m., December 9, 2019. (Section 181.033, Texas Election Code). NEW LAW: HB 2504 (2019) --  HB 2504 requires that the application for nomination must now be accompanied by either a filing fee or a petition in lieu of filing fee, delivered to the Secretary of State (for a statewide or district office) or to the county judge (for a county or precinct office), in order for the applicant to qualify for nomination. The amount of the filing fee or the number of signatures required for the petition in lieu of a filing fee is the same amount that is required for a candidate seeking nomination by primary election under Sections 172.024 and 172.025. (NOTE: There are no extra requirements for judicial applicants.) The first day a candidate may submit a filing fee or petition in lieu of filing fee to the Secretary of State or County Judge, whichever is applicable, is November 9, 2019. Candidates should contact their party chairs for details on filing candidate applications.  Additionally, though the effective date of the HB 2504 is September 1, 2019, candidates may begin collecting petition signatures immediately.

If you receive a majority of the votes cast at the county, district, or state convention, as appropriate, and you submitted your filing fee or petition in lieu of filing fee to county judge or Secretary of State, whichever is applicable, your name will appear on the general election ballot in November 2020 if your party has obtained ballot access.

For more information on obtaining ballot access, please see our guide on establishing a political party in Texas.

Nominee of New Party or Party without Ballot Access
Public Office Sought in 2020 File Application with Party Chair File with County Judge or SOS (filing fee OR nominating petition)
  State County Filing fee %Signatures a Number of Signatures b
President

x

-

-

-

 

United States Senator

x

-

$5,000

 

5000

United States Representative

x

-

$3,125

2%

500

Railroad Commissioner

x

-

$3,750

 

5000

Chief Justice and Justice, Supreme Court

x

-

$3,750

 

5000

Judge, Court of Criminal Appeals

x

-

$3,750

 

5000

State Senator

x

-

$1,250

2%

500

State Representative

x

-

$750

2%

500

Member, State Board of Education

x

-

$300

2%

500

Chief Justice and Justice, Court of Appeals

x

-

$2,500 /
$1,875 c

2%

500

District Judge

x

-

$2,500 /
$1,500 d

2%

500

Criminal District Judge

x

-

$2,500 /
$1,500 d

2%

500

Family District Judge

x

-

$2,500 /
$1,500 d

2%

500

District Attorney

x

-

$1,250

2%

500

Criminal District Attorney

x

-

$1,250

2%

500

County Judge

-

x

$1,250 /
$750 e

2%

500

Judge, County Court-at-Law

-

x

$2,500 /
$1,500 d

2%

500

Judge, County Criminal Court

-

x

$2,500 /
$1,500 d

2%

500

Judge, County Probate Court

-

x

$2,500 /
$1,500 d

2%

500

County Attorney

-

x

$1,250 /
$750 e

2%

500

Sheriff

-

x

$1,250 /
$750 e

2%

500

Tax-Assessor-Collector

-

x

1,250 /
$750 e

2%

500

County Commissioner

-

x

$1,250 /
$750 e

2%

500

Constable

-

x

$1,000 /
$375 e

2%

500

Justice of the Peace

-

x

$1,000 /
$375 e

2%

500

Source: Texas Election Code Section

§§ 181.032; 182.0041

§172.024

§172.025

 

  1. Percentage of all votes for all gubernatorial candidates cast in the applicable territory in the 2018 general election. If number is less than 50, the required number of signatures is the lesser of (1) 50 or (2) 20% of all votes for all gubernatorial candidates cast in the applicable territory in the 2018 general election.
  2. The minimum number of signatures that must appear on a candidate’s petition for statewide office is 5000. The minimum number of signatures that must appear on a candidate’s petition for district, county or precinct office is the lesser of (1) 500 or (2) 2% of the total vote received in the district, county or precinct, as applicable, by all gubernatorial candidates in the 2018 general election, subject to (c) above. Section 172.025, Texas Election Code).
  3. Pay higher fee in Courts of Appeals Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 14. (Section 172.024(7), (8), Texas Election Code).
  4. Pay higher fee in Bexar, Dallas, Harris and Tarrant Counties. (Sections 172.024(10), (12), Texas Election Code).
  5. Pay higher fee if county has at least 200,000 inhabitants according to 2010 Census.