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Write-In Candidates

In order to become a write-in candidate in the general election, file a Declaration of Write-in Candidacy (PDF) with the Secretary of State or your county judge, as appropriate (see chart), no earlier than July 18, 2020, and no later than 5:00 p.m. on August 17, 2020. Section 146.025, Texas Election Code. Your declaration must be accompanied by either a filing fee or a nominating petition (PDF) signed by a certain number of qualified voters. Tex. Sections 146.023(b), 146.0231, 146.0232, Texas Election Code.

A person who was a candidate for office in the primary election is ineligible for a place on the list of write-in candidates for that same office in the succeeding general election for state and county officers. Section 162.015, Texas Election Code.

Write-In-Candidates
Public Office Sought in 2020
File Declaration of Write-in Candidacy
with
Filing Fee Nominating Petition in Lieu of Filing Fee  
  Sec of State County Judge   % Signatures a Number of Signatures e
United States Senator x - $5,000 - 5,000
United States Representative x - $3,125 2% 500
Railroad Commissioner x - $3,750 - 5,000
Chief Justice and Justice, Supreme Court x - $3,750 - 5,000
Judge, Court of Criminal Appeals x - $3,750 - 5,000
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 b
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 b
2% 500
Sheriff - x $1,250 /
$750 b
2% 500
Tax-Assessor Collector - x $1,250 /
$750 b
2% 500
County Commissioner - x $1,250 /
$750 b
2% 500
Justice of the Peace - x $1,000 /
$375 b
2% 500
Constable - x $1,000 /
$375 b
2% 500
Source: Texas Election Code Section §146.024   §146.023(b)
§ 146.0231
§172.024
§146.023(b)
§146.0232
§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, a larger percentage may be required. 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. Sections 146.0232, 172.025, Texas Election Code.
  2. Pay higher fee if county has at least 200,000 inhabitants according to 2010 Census.
  3. Pay higher fee in Courts of Appeals Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 14. Sections 146.0231, 172.024(8), Texas Election Code.
  4. Pay higher fee in Bexar, Dallas, Harris and Tarrant Counties. Sections 146.0231 172.024(9)-(12), Texas Election Code.

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 2014 general election, subject to (a) above. Section 172.025, Texas Election Code.