Candidates are the people who run for an election. Successfully elected candidates represent the community:
- as a Member of Parliament when elected at a state election
- as a Mayor or Councillor when elected at a local government election.
Who is eligible?
To nominate as a candidate, you must be:
- at least 18 years old
- an Australian citizen
- enrolled on the Queensland electoral roll
- live in the local government area for local government elections.
Who can’t be a candidate?
The ECQ and returning officers cannot give eligibility advice. If you’re in doubt of your eligibility, please seek independent legal advice. The Queensland Legislation website provides further information on disqualifications.
- For state elections, read the Parliament of Queensland Act 2001, section 64
- For Brisbane City Council elections, read the City of Brisbane Act 2010, section 153
- For all other local government elections, read the Local Government Act 2009, section 153
Nominees must pay a $250 deposit at the time of nomination. For state government nomination, you can pay the deposit by cash or bank cheque. For local government elections, you can pay by cash, bank cheque or EFTPOS in person at the ECQ head office. Please note we cannot accept personal cheques under any circumstances.
We refund nomination deposits to candidates who:
- withdraw consent to the nomination before 12 noon on the day of nomination closure
- are successfully elected
- receive 6% (state) or more than 4% (local) of the formal first preference votes in their nominated area.
Forming a group of candidates
Candidates are considered to be campaigning as a group if they share resources and common policy platforms.
From 20 January 2020, all candidates contesting local government elections must register groups with the ECQ before conducting group campaigning activities. Further information about laws for groups of candidates, including how to register as a group, is available in Fact sheet 5 - Information for groups of candidates.
Candidates who are endorsed by registered political parties do not have to register as a group.
Funding and disclosure obligations
All candidates, registered political parties, donors and third party campaigners have funding and disclosure obligations, it is the responsibility of each candidate, political party or donor to ensure they are informed about their obligations by reading the relevant Guide to Election and Disclosure Obligations, which are available in the candidates and parties handbooks, fact sheets and forms section on this website.
More detailed information about the requirements for candidates can be found on the Handbooks, fact sheets and forms page. Specific information that was provided to candidates for the 2020 local government elections can be found on the Candidate requirements – 2020 local government elections page.