Table 3.5

Legislators: Qualifications for Election


  House/Assembly Senate
FIPS State or other
jurisdiction
Minimum age U.S. citizen (years) (a) State resident (years) (b) District resident (years) Qualified voter (years) Minimum age U.S. citizen (years) (a) State resident (years) (b) District resident (years) Qualified voter (years)
01Alabama*213 (c)1253 (c)1
02Alaska21312531
04Arizona25312531
05Arkansas21212521
06California1833118331
08Colorado25112511
09Connecticut2121
10Delaware2431273 (c)1
12Florida*212212
13Georgia212 (c)252 (c)
15Hawaii183183
16Idaho2111121111
17Illinois2122 (d)2122 (d)
18Indiana212125221
19Iowa21160 days25160 days
20Kansas18✓(c)18✓(c)
21Kentucky242 (c)1306 (c)1
22Louisiana18211821
23Maine21513 mo.25513 mo.
24Maryland*211 (c)6 mo. (e)251 (c)6 mo. (e)
25Massachusetts*181185(j)
26Michigan21(f)21(f)
27Minnesota2116 mo.2116 mo.
28Mississippi*214 (c)2254 (c)2
29Missouri24123013
30Montana*1816 mo. (g)1816 mo. (g)
31NebraskaUUUUU21✓(c)1
32Nevada211 (c)30 days (h)211 (c)30 days (h)
33New Hampshire182 (c)307 (c)
34New Jersey212 (c)2302 (c)(j)
35New Mexico2125
36New York*1851 (i)1851 (i)
37North Carolina2112521
38North Dakota18130 days in precinct18130 days in precinct
39Ohio1830 days1 (o)1830 days1 (o)
40Oklahoma21✓(c)25✓(c)
41Oregon21✓(q)✕ (r)121✕(r)1 (s)
42Pennsylvania214 (c)1254 (c)1
44Rhode Island1830 days1830 days
45South Carolina*21✓ (j)21✓ (j)
46South Dakota212212
47Tennessee21(c)13031
48Texas21212651
49Utah2536 mo.✓(p)2536 mo.✓(p)
50Vermont182 (t)1 (t)✓(t)182 (t)1 (t)✓(t)
51Virginia211211
53Washington1818
54West Virginia1811 (c)2555 (c)
55Wisconsin181✓(k)✓(k)181✓(k)✓(k)
56Wyoming21✓(c)125✓(c)1
11Dist. of Columbia*UUUUU181
60American Samoa*25✓(l)5130 (m)✓(l)51
66Guam*UUUUU255
69CNMI* **213(f)255(f)
72Puerto Rico*2521 (n)3021 (n)
78U.S. Virgin Islands*UUUUU213 (c)3

Source:

The Council of State Governments' survey of state legislative service agencies, 2022.

Notes:

Many state constitutions have additional provisions disqualifying persons from holding office if they are convicted of a felony, bribery, perjury or other infamous crimes.

Key:

* Information from The Council of State Governments’ 2020 survey of state legislative services agencies and 2021 review of state websites.
** Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands.
U — Unicameral legislature; members are called senators, except in District of Columbia.
✓ — Formal provision; number of years not specified.
✕ — No formal provision.

Footnotes:

(a) In some states candidate must be a U.S. citizen to be an elector, and must be an elector to run.
(b) In some states candidate must be a state resident to be an elector, and must be an elector to run.
(c) State citizenship requirement. In Tennessee- must be a citizen for three years.
(d) In the first election after a redistricting, a candidate may be elected from any district that contains a part of the district in which (s)he resided at the time of redistricting, and may be re-elected if a resident of the district (s)he represents for 18 months before re-election.
(e) If the district was established for less than six months, residency is length of establishment of district.
(f) Must be a qualified voter of the district; number of years not specified.
(g) Shall be a resident of the county if it contains one or more districts or if the district contains all or parts of more than one county.
(h) 30 days prior to close of filing for declaration of candidacy.
(i) After redistricting, candidate must have been a resident of the county in which the district is contained for one year immediately preceding election.
(j) At the time of filing.
(k) Ten consecutive days before any election.
(l) Or U.S. national.
(m) Must be registered matai.
(n) The district legislator must live in the municipality he/she represents.
(o) One year unless absent from the district on the public business of the United States or Ohio.
(p) In the district.
(q) See Article IV, Section 8 for qualifications for election for both Senate and House members.
(r) No provision but implied by district residency requirement.
(s) 1 year (less for election following redistricting).
(t) State resident: 2 years via Vt. Const. Ch. II, sec. 15. District resident: 1 year via Vt. Const. Ch. II, sec. 15. Qualified voter: Via Vt. Const. Ch. I, Art. 8, "voters" have a right to elect and be elected to constitutional offices, including legislator. So, one must meet the qualifications to vote in Vt. Const. Ch. II, sec. 42 in order to be elected as a legislator (min. age of 18, U.S. citizen, VT resident, voter's oath).