What Are Declarations

Many forms have circulator declarations, which are processed differently than tagging signatures. Declarations can be found at the bottom of a page that also has signatures or on a dedicated page with no signatures. If the layout that loads wants input for a declaration, do the declaration and save it. Someone else will process the signatures after you save it if there were no deficiencies in the declarations. Circulator declarations are sometimes labeled "affidavits" or something totally different on the petition.

Pay works differently for declarations than for signatures. Two OG's process each declaration, and only if the info they enter differs, will it go to peer review.

Unlike signatures, information for declarations does need to be in the correction place. THE MOST IMPORTANT THING WITH FILLING OUT CIRCULATOR DECLARATIONS IS TO RECORD WHAT YOU SEE, NOT WHAT YOU THINK IT SHOULD BE. The purpose of completing declaration forms is not to tell the campaign who circulated on what dates and who notarized. It is a process to locate mistakes on the form that could invalidate the whole section of signatures.

Every state has slightly different rules for how to tag signatures. Every state has different information required in the circulator declarations. There are no default specs for declarations. Each state will have the specs for declarations spelled out in its entirety.


Every declaration form has a field called Shorthand. The shorthand varies by state. It is the first letter and number of each required element in the circulator name and address and a complete zip code.

For each required element that is missing, enter a dash (-). If the zip code is partially written, but incomplete enter a single dash in place of the entire zip code. If both the name and address are missing, enter a single dash as the shorthand and save the form with no additional data entry.

Ignore anything not required such as middle name, address direction, or apartment. For example, East Main St would be entered as m for Main and the East ignored, since it's merely a direction, but something like North Hollywood, North is part of the city name, so the letter for that city would be n. Also, if the street is literally East, as in East St, enter e, since that's the name of the street and not the direction.

If the city is more than 1 word in length, enter the first letter of the first word and ignore the second word. If a last name is hyphenated, only enter the first letter of the first hyphenated name.

If the street name is a number such as 1st St, enter the first digit of the street name.

The Cairo rule: There is one circulator out there who thinks they are a celebrity named Cairo, who legally has only a first name. For Cairo, enter "cc" for first and last initial. Because Cairo has no last name, do not enter "c-".

The Anthony Williams rule: He is not illiterate, best we know, but he signs with a plain 'X'. Treat it as a valid signature.

Other Fields

If there are any checkboxes, tick them after confirming what it refers to is filled out in the declaration.

Never infer dates from other information on the form. Always enter them exactly as written.

Whereas for the shorthand you enter a dash for a missing element, any other fields such as signing date that are blank on the declaration, leave blank in Sigtrack.

Client Disputes

When doing declaration forms, you may get a message from the client if there is a mistake. Always follow the specs, even if the client asks you otherwise.