Running for Office?

Are you considering running for a local office such as school board or city council? Before you do make sure to check out the requirements. Most of the time it’s as easy as contacting your local board of elections. However, they can’t answer all your questions. Here are some common questions that a board of elections can’t answer:

What if everyone knows me by a name other than my legal name?

Recent Ohio Supreme Court rulings have found that your name as it appears on the ballot should be your legal name, however, if you have adopted a different name that the community generally knows you as, then that name should appear on the ballot.

I want to run, but I live half the year in Florida. Is that a problem?

A common issue with candidates is residency. Only a resident of the state of Ohio may run for office. In regards to elections, residency is established by a person’s “domicile”. The Court has consistently indicated that this means wherever the person “intends to return”. In other words, home is where the heart is.

Who can sign petitions for me?

A person must be a registered voter in your jurisdiction for a signature to count. This means that the signer must be able to vote for you. For instance, if you ran for mayor of Cleveland, the signer must be a registered voter in the City of Cleveland. But be careful, there are many other intricacies of petitions that you should know before you start getting signatures.

If you have questions about running for office, or you believe someone isn’t qualified to run contact an attorney well versed in elections law. You can email me at or call or text me at 216-200-6765.