Here are the Write-in Candidate Rules for President

Empty Lighthouse is a reader-supported site. This article may contain affiliate links to Amazon and other sites. We earn a commission on purchases made through these links.

For huge number of people in this presidential election, either Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump is acceptable.

Even third-party candidates, like Jill Stein and Gary Johnson often turn off potential voters due to certain issues.

So a lot of people are thinking about writing in candidates. What are the rules for writing in candidates? Should you write in a candidate?

What are the Write In Candidate Rules?

Most people think that they can just simply write in a candidate if they are unhappy with their choices in an election.

However this isn't the case. In fact there are certain rules you have to follow, and if you don't, your vote will mean nothing.

Ballot Pedia has listed the requirements for writing in candidates by state.

According to them, in nine states, you can't write in a candidate it all. These states are: South Carolina, Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Hawaii, New Mexico, and Nevada.

What are the Write In Candidate Rules -- States Where You Can Write In a Candidate

There are actually only seven states in which you can write in a candidate and it will matter. Those are New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Iowa, and Oregon.

What are the Write In Candidate Rules -- All Other States

In all the rest of the states, 34 in total, a write-in candidate must file paperwork before they are allowed to be counted. That means that you can't simply write somebody's name and expect your vote to count.

So even if millions of people write in somebody like Bernie Sanders, or Mike Pence, in most states, they will get zero official votes.

Want to learn more about the writing candidate rules? Check out Ballot Pedia for the entire rundown.