Candidate Guide to Ballot Access

Candidate Guide to Ballot Access
In order to get on the ballot in the District of Columbia, candidates must meet certain qualifications, including a variety of District-specific filing requirements and deadlines. Here is the Board's 2020 Quick Reference: Candidate Guide to Ballot Access.

Ballot Access Training 
The Board's Voter Services staff conducts training sessions for candidates, proponents of ballot measures, and petition circulators. The training sessions provide an overview of the Board’s guidelines and policies for circulating nominating and ballot measure petitions. The training sessions are held every other Tuesday at 12:15 pm. All petition circulators are encouraged to attend. 

Here is some general information about our training, a list of upcoming sessions, and a training agenda.  These dates are also listed in the Events section of the Board's Newsroom.


Poll Watchers and Election Observers
Any person wishing to observe the administration of the election at the polling place or at the Board’s Counting Center on Election Day may petition the Board for credentials as an Election Observer or Poll Watcher. Petitions for credentials should be submitted to the Board at least two weeks before Election Day.

The information in this online guide is subject to change. For the latest information, see the Newsroom or follow us on Twitter or Facebook. In the event of a conflict with information contained in this guide, in the Official Calendar, or on our website, the laws and the regulations of the District of Columbia will apply.

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1 Qualified Elector means a citizen of the United States who is at least 17 years of age and who will be 18 years of age on or before the next general election; is a citizen of the United States; has maintained a residence in the District for at least 30 days preceding the next election and does not claim voting residence or the right to vote in any state or territory; is not incarcerated for a conviction of crime that is a felony in the District; and has not been found by a court of law to be legally incompetent to vote [DC Official Code § 1-1001.02 (2)].
2 A person holding the office of Mayor, Delegate, Chairman or member of the Council, or member of the Board of Education shall, while holding such office, be eligible as a candidate for any other of such offices in any primary or general election. [DC Official Code § 1-1001.15 (b).]