Write-In Candidate Information
Running a Write-in Campaign
Prior to Election Day and on Election Day
If you wish to run a write-in campaign, here are a few guidelines.
- While it is not required that you notify the Election Bureau of your campaign, it will help with the tabulation of your votes. You may notify the Election Bureau of your campaign using the following form: Write-in Candidate Declaration (PDF). This form may be submitted by mail, faxed to (724) 284-5311 or emailed to email@example.com
- You must keep track of expenses and file a campaign finance statement if you spend over $250 in a reporting period.
- You may not use stickers on ballots.
- To win a race, you must have at least the same number of votes as required to get on the ballot by petition. To see the signature requirements to get on the ballot by petition, please click here.
- If there is already someone on the ballot, you must get more votes than the candidates on the ballot.
- Write-in votes start being counted the Friday after the election. They are tabulated by the Computation Board in the Election Bureau Office. This process is open to the public and may last multiple days depending on the number of write-ins countywide.
- The Computation Board must be able to read the write-ins and attribute them to you in order for them to count towards your total votes.
- If you are not the winner, the Computation Board is not required to keep track of how many votes you received.
- If no one candidate received the minimum number of votes to win, the race is declared "scattered" and therefore vacant.
- If you are declared the winner, you will receive a packet of required paperwork in the mail once the election is certified (approximately two weeks after the election).
- Included in the paperwork is a letter which requires you to accept or decline the position, a Write-In Candidate's Affidavit (requires a notary), a Waiver of Expense Account Reporting Affidavit, and a Statement of Financial Interest Form.
- You must return the acceptance letter and attached affidavits to the Election Bureau by the deadline indicated on the letter in order for the Election Bureau to mail your certificate to your municipality or school board.
- If there is a filing fee associated with the office, you must also pay the fee when you return your paperwork.
- The Statement of Financial Interest Form must be filed with the appropriate agency listed on the back of the form within 30 days of the certification of the election or the position will be declared vacant.
- Your municipality or school board will contact you regarding the next steps.