§ 163-323.  Notice of candidacy.

(a)        Form of Notice. - Each person offering to be a candidate for election shall do so by filing a notice of candidacy with the State Board of Elections in the following form, inserting the words in parentheses when appropriate:

Date ______________________________

I hereby file notice that I am a candidate for election to the office of _______________ in the regular election to be held __________, __________.

Signed ______________________________

                                                                                                     (Name of Candidate)

Witness:               ________________________________________________________________

The notice of candidacy shall be either signed in the presence of the chairman or secretary of the State Board of Elections, or signed and acknowledged before an officer authorized to take acknowledgments who shall certify the notice under seal. An acknowledged and certified notice may be mailed to the State Board of Elections. In signing a notice of candidacy, the candidate shall use only the candidate's legal name and, in his discretion, any nickname by which commonly known. A candidate may also, in lieu of that candidate's first name and legal middle initial or middle name, if any, sign that candidate's nickname, provided the candidate appends to the notice of candidacy an affidavit that the candidate has been commonly known by that nickname for at least five years prior to the date of making the affidavit. The candidate shall also include with the affidavit the way the candidate's name (as permitted by law) should be listed on the ballot if another candidate with the same last name files a notice of candidacy for that office.

A notice of candidacy signed by an agent or any person other than the candidate himself shall be invalid.

(b)        Time for Filing Notice of Candidacy. - Candidates seeking election to the following offices shall file their notice of candidacy with the State Board of Elections no earlier than 12:00 noon on the second Monday in February and no later than 12:00 noon on the last business day in February preceding the election:

Justices of the Supreme Court.

Judges of the Court of Appeals.

Judges of the superior courts.

Judges of the district courts.

(c)        Withdrawal of Notice of Candidacy. - Any person who has filed a notice of candidacy for an office shall have the right to withdraw it at any time prior to the close of business on the third business day prior to the date on which the right to file for that office expires under the terms of subsection (b) of this section.

(d)        Certificate That Candidate Is Registered Voter. - Candidates shall file along with their notice a certificate signed by the chairman of the board of elections or the director  of elections of the county in which they are registered to vote, stating that the person is registered to vote in that county, and if the candidacy is for superior court judge and the county contains more than one superior court district, stating the superior court district of which the person is a resident. In issuing such certificate, the chairman or director shall check the registration records of the county to verify such information. During the period commencing 36 hours immediately preceding the filing deadline, the State Board of Elections shall accept, on a conditional basis, the notice of candidacy of a candidate who has failed to secure the verification ordered herein subject to receipt of verification no later than three days following the filing deadline. The State Board of Elections shall prescribe the form for such certificate, and distribute it to each county board of elections no later than the last Monday in December of each odd-numbered year.

(e)        Candidacy for More Than One Office Prohibited. - No person may file a notice of candidacy for more than one office or group of offices described in subsection (b) of this section, or for an office or group of offices described in subsection (b) of this section and an office described in G.S. 163-106(c), for any one election. If a person has filed a notice of candidacy with a board of elections under this section or under G.S. 163-106(c) for one office or group of offices, then a notice of candidacy may not later be filed for any other office or group of offices under this section when the election is on the same date unless the notice of candidacy for the first office is withdrawn under subsection (c) of this section.

(f)         Notice of Candidacy for Certain Offices to Indicate Vacancy. - In any election in which there are two or more vacancies for the office of justice of the Supreme Court, judge of the Court of Appeals, or district court judge to be filled by nominations, each candidate shall, at the time of filing notice of candidacy, file with the State Board of Elections a written statement designating the vacancy to which the candidate seeks election. Votes cast for a candidate shall be effective only for election to the vacancy for which the candidate has given notice of candidacy as provided in this subsection.

A person seeking election for a specialized district judgeship established under G.S. 7A-147 shall, at the time of filing notice of candidacy, file with the State Board of Elections a written statement designating the specialized judgeship to which the person seeks nomination.

(g)        No person may file a notice of candidacy for superior court judge unless that person is at the time of filing the notice of candidacy a resident of the judicial district as it will exist at the time the person would take office if elected. No person may be nominated as a superior court judge under G.S. 163-114 unless that person is at the time of nomination a resident of the judicial district as it will exist at the time the person would take office if elected. This subsection implements Article IV, Section 9(1) of the North Carolina Constitution which requires regular Superior Court Judges to reside in the district for which elected.  (1996, 2nd Ex. Sess., c. 9, s. 7; 1998-217, s. 36(a); 2001-403, s. 1; 2001-466, s. 5.1(b); 2002-158, s. 7; 2002-159, s. 21(g); 2013-381, s. 21.3.)