Unaffiliated Candidate Petition Nomination (General Election)

For President & Vice President


Have you announced your candidacy and filed the required campaign finance forms?

Yes, continue to Step 1.

No, I need to become a candidate.



  1. Eligibility for nomination
  2. Petition signature requirements
  3. Petition format approval
  4. Start circulating petition
  5. Submit petition with candidate and electors' acceptance forms
  6. Signature verification and notice of sufficiency or insufficiency
  7. Submit audio recording
  8. Names placed on general election ballot
  9. Additional filing requirements


Step 1: Eligibility for nomination

Candidates must meet the basic qualifications for office.

In order to be eligible to circulate a petition, a person must be a citizen of the United States and at least 18 years of age. [1]


Step 2: Petition signature requirements

A petition must contain at least 5,000 signatures from eligible electors who have not signed a petition for any other candidate for the same office. [2]


Step 3: Petition format approval

Petition formats must be approved by the Secretary of State prior to circulation. [3]

In order to create a petition template, the candidate must provide a list of presidential electors. Thus, have your electors fill out the Presidential Electors’ Acceptance of Nomination form (PDF) and submit the form to our office.

In April 2020, contact the Secretary of State’s Office at 303-894-2200 x6333 to receive a petition template and begin the format approval process.


Step 4: Start circulating petition

Once your petition format is approved, begin circulating the petition 173 days (May 14, 2020) preceding the general election.


Step 5:  Submit petition with candidate and electors' acceptance forms

The completed petition must be filed no later than 3:00 PM on the 117th day (July 9, 2020) before the general election. [4]

  1. Complete the Presidential Petition Nomination Acceptance (PDF) and the Vice Presidential Petition Nomination Acceptance (PDF) forms.

    The candidate acceptance forms must state each candidate’s name as it will appear on the ballot. [5]

  2. Mail or hand deliver the petition along with the acceptance forms to:

    Colorado Secretary of State
    Attention:  Ballot Access
    1700 Broadway, Suite 200
    Denver CO, 80290


Step 6: Signature verification and notice of sufficiency or insufficiency

Petition signatures will be verified by the Secretary of State and a declaration of sufficiency or insufficiency will be made no later than 96 days before the general election.  [6]

We will notify you of your petition’s sufficiency or insufficiency in writing. For a faster response, please provide an email address where we can send the statement of sufficiency/insufficiency.

If found to be sufficient, the petition will be deemed valid, unless a protest is made in writing within five days after the statement of sufficiency is issued. [7]    


Step 7: Submit audio recording

Candidate audio recording must be submitted to the Secretary of State no later than 117 days before the general election. 

The audio recording must state the candidate’s name exactly as it appears on the candidate acceptance form, as this is how the candidate’s name will appear on the ballot. [8]

Audio Recording Instructions


Step 8: Names placed on general election ballot


Step 9: Additional filing requirements

All candidates for president or vice president should contact the Federal Election Commission for campaign finance information and other requirements not addressed at the state level.

Federal Election Commission
999 E. Street, NW
Washington, DC 20463
Web: www.fec.gov




[1] 1-4-905(1), C.R.S.
[2] 1-4-802(1)(c)(I) & 1-4-904(1), 2(b), C.R.S.
[3] 1-4-903, C.R.S.
[4] 1-4-802(1)(f)(I), C.R.S.
[5] 1-4-906, C.R.S.
[6] 1-4-908, C.R.S.
[7] 1-4-909(1), C.R.S.
[8] SOS Election Rule 4.6.1