Becoming a State election candidate Read this page in Easy English

Can I be a candidate?

To be a candidate for a State election you must be correctly enrolled on the electoral roll in Victoria.

You are not eligible to nominate for either the Legislative Assembly or Legislative Council if you:

  • are not enrolled as an elector
  • are a judge of a court of Victoria
  • have been convicted or found guilty of an indictable offence, punishable upon first conviction by imprisonment for life, or for a term of five years or more. This offence must have been committed when aged 18 years or over, under the law of Victoria, or under the law of any other part of the British Commonwealth of Nations
  • are an undischarged bankrupt or
  • are a member of either House of the Commonwealth Parliament.

Further information is contained in the Constitution Act 1975 (external link).

If you are a municipal councillor, or are employed in the Victorian or Commonwealth Public Service, you are eligible to stand for election but will not be eligible to take office without first resigning from your previous position.

How do I nominate?

Candidates for registered political parties are nominated by the registered officer of the party. These nominations must be lodged with the VEC.

Candidates who are not endorsed by a political party must nominate with the Election Manager for the district in which they are nominating. Candidates nominating for a region may nominate with the Election Manager for any district within the region in which they are nominating.

Independent candidates are encouraged to use the VEC's online Candidate Helper, which will be available from this website during an election period. Nomination forms are also available from any Election Manager, or on this website, whenever there is an election or by-election.

You can only nominate for one Legislative Assembly District or one Legislative Council Region. If someone nominates as a candidate in more than one district and/or region, all nominations are declared void.

How much does it cost?

Each candidate nomination must be accompanied by a deposit of $350. The deposit must be paid in cash or by banker's cheque, credit union or building society cheque. A personal cheque is not acceptable.

The deposit will be returned if the candidate:

  • is elected
  • receives at least four percent of the first preference votes in the electorate
  • retires before the close of nominations
  • dies before 6:00pm on election day or is successful but dies before being declared elected or
  • if the election fails.

All other candidates will forfeit their deposits.

Do I need to live in the electorate?

Candidates do not need to live in the district for which they are standing. However, for independent candidates, the people who nominate the candidate must be enrolled in that district. Six nominators are required for the Legislative Assembly (district).

It is recommended that additional nominator names are provided in case some are not on the electoral roll.

Can I have a copy of the electoral roll?

Candidates have been provided with an electronic copy of the roll for the election they are contesting, free of charge. This file can be printed if required and will be in a format suitable for looking up names and mail-merging letters.

Each candidate must personally sign an electoral roll confidentiality agreement to ensure that the data is used solely for campaign purposes in relation to the election.

All copies of the roll that are provided to candidates must be destroyed or returned after the declaration of the result for that election.

Can I distribute how-to-vote cards?

There are strict rules about the distribution of electoral matter (including how-to-vote cards) at a State election.

Please see how-to-vote cards for information on registering and distributing this material.

Am I entitled to public funding?

A dollar amount per first preference vote is provided to eligible candidates. The funding amount for the 2015 Gippsland South District by-election is $1.661.

To receive funding, a candidate must receive at least four percent of the first-preference votes for their election. Registered political parties receive funding for their endorsed candidates. Candidates not endorsed by a registered political party receive funding directly.

Parties and candidates receive funding only if they provide the VEC with an audited statement that their election spending has been no less than their entitlement. Parties and candidates that have spent less than their entitlement receive only the amount they have spent. The VEC has the power to request further information, and penalties apply if false statements are made. Statements of expenditure must be lodged with the VEC within 20 weeks of election day.

See public funding paid at previous elections for more information.

Please rate this page from 1 to 5 where 1 is unhelpful and 5 is very helpful