2014 Update on Florida’s Loyalty Oaths (showing relevant laws)

Update on Florida’s Loyalty Oaths.

Distribute this info far and wide. It answers your question about what law requires the oaths, where are the forms, and who has possession of the oaths.

Public officers MUST take these loyalty Oaths

1. Florida Constitution Article VI Section 3 and Florida Statute (FS) 97.051 Elector’s oath – Get these from the county election supervisor

http://election.dos.state.fl.us/voter-registration/voter-reg.shtml#voterApp

2. Bar oath (see Bar Examiner rules – the public cannot access these, but Attorneys can buy a certified copy for $30). Only judges (except for small counties, See Fl Const Art 5 Sect 20(b)(11)), justices, the Attorney General, and the State Attorneys and their assistants must swear this in order to have their positions.

3. FS 876.05 oath, pre-candidate (most recent election or appointment) (changed in 2007, so not required for candidates.

http://election.myflorida.com/forms/index.shtml#judcan
http://election.myflorida.com/forms/pdf/DSDE26.pdf


DS-DE 26
Judicial Office Candidate Oath 05/11 (pdf,145kb)

4. FS 105.031 Candidate’s oath for non-partisan officers like judges (see above dsde26 form).

OR

FS 99.021 for non judicial election candidates.

Bureau of election records has these (see below).

5. Florida Constitution Article II Section 5b Public Officer’s oath (most recent election or appointment). The Bureau of Election records, Div of Elections, Dept of State has these.
http://election.dos.state.fl.us/division/bureau/elect-records.shtml

Form ID number Form Name Date Format and Size DS-DE 56 Oath of Office 02/10 (pdf,52kb) 6. FS 876.05 oath, pre-paycheck (most recent election or appointment) (see dsde26 form above) For other elected officers, see http://election.myflorida.com/forms/index.shtml. The human resources dept for the sheriff or other officials or public employees has these.

The Law Regarding Loyalty Oaths

Here I provide the actual text of the laws.


US Constitution Article VI Clause 3

The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the members of the several state legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several states, shall be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.

4 United States Code 101, 102

101. Every member of a State legislature, and every executive and judicial officer of a State, shall, before he proceeds to execute the duties of his office, take an oath in the following form, to wit: “I, A B, do solemnly swear that I will support the Constitution of the United States.”

102. Such oath may be administered by any person who, by the law of the State, is authorized to administer the oath of office; and the person so administering such oath shall cause a record or certificate thereof to be made in the same manner, as by the law of the State, he is directed to record or certify the oath of office.

Florida Constitution Article II Section 5

(b) Each state and county officer, before entering upon the duties of
the office, shall give bond as required by law, and shall swear or affirm:

“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support, protect, and
defend the Constitution and Government of the United States and of the
State of Florida; that I am duly qualified to hold office under the
Constitution of the state; and that I will well and faithfully perform
the duties of (title of office) on which I am now about to enter. So
help me God.”,

and thereafter shall devote personal attention to the duties of the
office, and continue in office until a successor qualifies.

See the Florida Constitution for bar membership requirements for various officers:

Article V SECTION 8. Eligibility.—No person shall be eligible for office of justice or judge of any court unless the person is an elector of the state and resides in the territorial jurisdiction of the court. No justice or judge shall serve after attaining the age of seventy years except upon temporary assignment or to complete a term, one-half of which has been served. No person is eligible for the office of justice of the supreme court or judge of a district court of appeal unless the person is, and has been for the preceding ten years, a member of the bar of Florida. No person is eligible for the office of circuit judge unless the person is, and has been for the preceding five years, a member of the bar of Florida. Unless otherwise provided by general law, no person is eligible for the office of county court judge unless the person is, and has been for the preceding five years, a member of the bar of Florida. Unless otherwise provided by general law, a person shall be eligible for election or appointment to the office of county court judge in a county having a population of 40,000 or less if the person is a member in good standing of the bar of Florida. History.—S.J.R. 52-D, 1971; adopted 1972; Am. H.J.R. 37, 1984; adopted 1984 (effective July 1, 1985); Am. proposed by Constitution Revision Commission, Revision No. 13, 1998, filed with the Secretary of State May 5, 1998; adopted 1998.

Article IV Section 5 (b) The attorney general shall be the chief state legal officer. There is created in the office of the attorney general the position of statewide prosecutor. The statewide prosecutor shall have concurrent jurisdiction with the state attorneys to prosecute violations of criminal laws occurring or having occurred, in two or more judicial circuits as part of a related transaction, or when any such offense is affecting or has affected two or more judicial circuits as provided by general law. The statewide prosecutor shall be appointed by the attorney general from not less than three persons nominated by the judicial nominating commission for the supreme court, or as otherwise provided by general law.

SECTION 17. State attorneys.—In each judicial circuit a state attorney shall be elected for a term of four years. Except as otherwise provided in this constitution, the state attorney shall be the prosecuting officer of all trial courts in that circuit and shall perform other duties prescribed by general law; provided, however, when authorized by general law, the violations of all municipal ordinances may be prosecuted by municipal prosecutors. A state attorney shall be an elector of the state and reside in the territorial jurisdiction of the circuit; shall be and have been a member of the bar of Florida for the preceding five years; shall devote full time to the duties of the office; and shall not engage in the private practice of law. State attorneys shall appoint such assistant state attorneys as may be authorized by law. History.—S.J.R. 52-D, 1971; adopted 1972; Am. H.J.R. 386, 1985; adopted 1986; Am. proposed by Constitution Revision Commission, Revision No. 13, 1998, filed with the Secretary of State May 5, 1998; adopted 1998.

SECTION 18. Public defenders.—In each judicial circuit a public defender shall be elected for a term of four years, who shall perform duties prescribed by general law. A public defender shall be an elector of the state and reside in the territorial jurisdiction of the circuit and shall be and have been a member of the Bar of Florida for the preceding five years. Public defenders shall appoint such assistant public defenders as may be authorized by law. History.—S.J.R. 52-D, 1971; adopted 1972; Am. proposed by Constitution Revision Commission, Revision No. 13, 1998, filed with the Secretary of State May 5, 1998; adopted 1998.

876.05 Public employees; oath.— (1) All persons who now or hereafter are employed by or who now or hereafter are on the payroll of the state, or any of its departments and agencies, subdivisions, counties, cities, school boards and districts of the free public school system of the state or counties, or institutions of higher learning, except candidates for federal office, are required to take an oath before any person duly authorized to take acknowledgments of instruments for public record in the state in the following form:

I, , a citizen of the State of Florida and of the United States of America, and being employed by or an officer of and a recipient of public funds as such employee or officer, do hereby solemnly swear or affirm that I will support the Constitution of the United States and of the State of Florida.

(2) Said oath shall be filed with the records of the governing official or employing governmental agency prior to the approval of any voucher for the payment of salary, expenses, or other compensation.
History.—s. 1, ch. 25046, 1949; s. 22, ch. 83-214; s. 55, ch. 2007-30; s. 77, ch. 2011-40.

876.06 Discharge for refusal to execute.—If any person required by ss. 876.05-876.10 to take the oath herein provided for fails to execute the same, the governing authority under which such person is employed shall cause said person to be immediately discharged, and his or her name removed from the payroll, and such person shall not be permitted to receive any payment as an employee or as an officer where he or she was serving. History.—s. 2, ch. 25046, 1949; s. 1414, ch. 97-102.

876.08 Penalty for not discharging.—Any governing authority or person, under whom any employee is serving or by whom employed who shall knowingly or carelessly permit any such employee to continue in employment after failing to comply with the provisions of ss. 876.05-876.10, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083. History.—s. 4, ch. 25046, 1949; s. 1140, ch. 71-136.

876.09 Scope of law.— (1) The provisions of ss. 876.05-876.10 shall apply to all employees and elected officers of the state, including the Governor and constitutional officers and all employees and elected officers of all cities, towns, counties, and political subdivisions, including the educational system.
(2) This act shall take precedence over all laws relating to merit, and of civil service law.
History.—ss. 5, 7, ch. 25046, 1949.

876.10 False oath; penalty.—If any person required by the provisions of ss. 876.05-876.10 to execute the oath herein required executes such oath, and it is subsequently proven that at the time of the execution of said oath said individual was guilty of making a false statement in said oath, he or she shall be guilty of perjury. History.—s. 6, ch. 25046, 1949; s. 1141, ch. 71-136; s. 1415, ch. 97-102.

Elector’s oath

Florida Constitution Article VI
SECTION 3. Oath.—Each eligible citizen upon registering shall subscribe the following: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will protect and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Florida, and that I am qualified to register as an elector under the Constitution and laws of the State of Florida.”

FS 97.051 Oath upon registering.—A person registering to vote must subscribe to the following oath: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will protect and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Florida, that I am qualified to register as an elector under the Constitution and laws of the State of Florida, and that all information provided in this application is true.” History.—s. 7, ch. 3879, 1889; RS 161; s. 8, ch. 4328, 1895; GS 178; RGS 222; CGL 257; s. 4, ch. 25383, 1949; s. 1, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 3, ch. 69-280; ss. 2, 4, ch. 71-108; s. 1, ch. 72-63; s. 2, ch. 77-175; s. 1, ch. 81-304; s. 9, ch. 94-224; s. 3, ch. 2005-277; s. 4, ch. 2005-278.
Note.—Former s. 98.11.

105.031 Qualification; filing fee; candidate’s oath; items required to be filed.— (non-partisan) (1) TIME OF QUALIFYING.—Except for candidates for judicial office, nonpartisan candidates for multicounty office shall qualify with the Division of Elections of the Department of State and nonpartisan candidates for countywide or less than countywide office shall qualify with the supervisor of elections. Candidates for judicial office other than the office of county court judge shall qualify with the Division of Elections of the Department of State, and candidates for the office of county court judge shall qualify with the supervisor of elections of the county. Candidates for judicial office shall qualify no earlier than noon of the 120th day, and no later than noon of the 116th day, before the primary election. Candidates for the office of school board member shall qualify no earlier than noon of the 71st day, and no later than noon of the 67th day, before the primary election. Filing shall be on forms provided for that purpose by the Division of Elections and furnished by the appropriate qualifying officer. Any person other than a write-in candidate who qualifies within the time prescribed in this subsection shall be entitled to have his or her name printed on the ballot.
(2) FILING IN GROUPS OR DISTRICTS.—Candidates shall qualify in groups or districts where multiple offices are to be filled.
(3) QUALIFYING FEE.—Each candidate qualifying for election to a judicial office or the office of school board member, except write-in judicial or school board candidates, shall, during the time for qualifying, pay to the officer with whom he or she qualifies a qualifying fee, which shall consist of a filing fee and an election assessment, or qualify by the petition process. The amount of the filing fee is 3 percent of the annual salary of the office sought. The amount of the election assessment is 1 percent of the annual salary of the office sought. The Department of State shall transfer all filing fees to the Department of Legal Affairs for deposit in the Elections Commission Trust Fund. The supervisor of elections shall forward all filing fees to the Elections Commission Trust Fund. The election assessment shall be deposited into the Elections Commission Trust Fund. The annual salary of the office for purposes of computing the qualifying fee shall be computed by multiplying 12 times the monthly salary authorized for such office as of July 1 immediately preceding the first day of qualifying. This subsection does not apply to candidates qualifying for retention to judicial office.
(4) CANDIDATE’S OATH.— (a) All candidates for the office of school board member shall subscribe to the oath as prescribed in s. 99.021.
(b) All candidates for judicial office shall subscribe to an oath or affirmation in writing to be filed with the appropriate qualifying officer upon qualifying. A printed copy of the oath or affirmation shall be furnished to the candidate by the qualifying officer and shall be in substantially the following form:

State of Florida

County of

Before me, an officer authorized to administer oaths, personally appeared (please print name as you wish it to appear on the ballot) , to me well known, who, being sworn, says he or she: is a candidate for the judicial office of ; that his or her legal residence is County, Florida; that he or she is a qualified elector of the state and of the territorial jurisdiction of the court to which he or she seeks election; that he or she is qualified under the constitution and laws of Florida to hold the judicial office to which he or she desires to be elected or in which he or she desires to be retained; that he or she has qualified for no other public office in the state, the term of which office or any part thereof runs concurrent to the office he or she seeks; that he or she has resigned from any office which he or she is required to resign pursuant to s. 99.012, Florida Statutes; and that he or she will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Florida.

(Signature of candidate)

(Address)

Sworn to and subscribed before me this day of , (year) , at County, Florida.

(Signature and title of officer administering oath)

(5) ITEMS REQUIRED TO BE FILED.— (a) In order for a candidate for judicial office or the office of school board member to be qualified, the following items must be received by the filing officer by the end of the qualifying period: 1. Except for candidates for retention to judicial office, a properly executed check drawn upon the candidate’s campaign account in an amount not less than the fee required by subsection (3) or, in lieu thereof, the copy of the notice of obtaining ballot position pursuant to s. 105.035. If a candidate’s check is returned by the bank for any reason, the filing officer shall immediately notify the candidate and the candidate shall, the end of qualifying notwithstanding, have 48 hours from the time such notification is received, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, to pay the fee with a cashier’s check purchased from funds of the campaign account. Failure to pay the fee as provided in this subparagraph shall disqualify the candidate.
2. The candidate’s oath required by subsection (4), which must contain the name of the candidate as it is to appear on the ballot; the office sought, including the district or group number if applicable; and the signature of the candidate, duly acknowledged.
3. The loyalty oath required by s. 876.05, signed by the candidate and duly acknowledged.
4. The completed form for the appointment of campaign treasurer and designation of campaign depository, as required by s. 106.021. In addition, each candidate for judicial office, including an incumbent judge, shall file a statement with the qualifying officer, within 10 days after filing the appointment of campaign treasurer and designation of campaign depository, stating that the candidate has read and understands the requirements of the Florida Code of Judicial Conduct. Such statement shall be in substantially the following form:

Statement of Candidate for Judicial Office

I, (name of candidate) , a judicial candidate, have received, read, and understand the requirements of the Florida Code of Judicial Conduct.

(Signature of candidate)

(Date)

5. The full and public disclosure of financial interests required by s. 8, Art. II of the State Constitution or the statement of financial interests required by s. 112.3145, whichever is applicable. A public officer who has filed the full and public disclosure or statement of financial interests with the Commission on Ethics or the supervisor of elections prior to qualifying for office may file a copy of that disclosure at the time of qualifying.

(b) If the filing officer receives qualifying papers that do not include all items as required by paragraph (a) prior to the last day of qualifying, the filing officer shall make a reasonable effort to notify the candidate of the missing or incomplete items and shall inform the candidate that all required items must be received by the close of qualifying. A candidate’s name as it is to appear on the ballot may not be changed after the end of qualifying.

(6) Notwithstanding the qualifying period prescribed in this section, a filing officer may accept and hold qualifying papers submitted not earlier than 14 days prior to the beginning of the qualifying period, to be processed and filed during the qualifying period.
History.—s. 3, ch. 71-49; s. 36, ch. 77-175; s. 1, ch. 78-260; s. 5, ch. 79-365; s. 54, ch. 79-400; s. 17, ch. 81-105; s. 10, ch. 83-251; s. 1, ch. 89-152; s. 34, ch. 89-338; s. 5, ch. 91-107; s. 630, ch. 95-147; s. 2, ch. 95-156; s. 13, ch. 97-13; s. 13, ch. 99-6; s. 2, ch. 99-326; s. 2, ch. 99-355; s. 23, ch. 2002-17; s. 65, ch. 2005-277; s. 21, ch. 2005-286; s. 40, ch. 2007-30; s. 4, ch. 2010-16; s. 51, ch. 2011-40.

99.021 Form of candidate oath.— (partisan) (1)(a)1. Each candidate, whether a party candidate, a candidate with no party affiliation, or a write-in candidate, in order to qualify for nomination or election to any office other than a judicial office as defined in chapter 105 or a federal office, shall take and subscribe to an oath or affirmation in writing. A copy of the oath or affirmation shall be made available to the candidate by the officer before whom such candidate seeks to qualify and shall be substantially in the following form:

State of Florida

County of

Before me, an officer authorized to administer oaths, personally appeared (please print name as you wish it to appear on the ballot) , to me well known, who, being sworn, says that he or she is a candidate for the office of ; that he or she is a qualified elector of County, Florida; that he or she is qualified under the Constitution and the laws of Florida to hold the office to which he or she desires to be nominated or elected; that he or she has qualified for no other public office in the state, the term of which office or any part thereof runs concurrent with that of the office he or she seeks; that he or she has resigned from any office from which he or she is required to resign pursuant to s. 99.012, Florida Statutes; and that he or she will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Florida.

(Signature of candidate)

(Address)

Sworn to and subscribed before me this day of , (year) , at County, Florida.

(Signature and title of officer administering oath)

2. Each candidate for federal office, whether a party candidate, a candidate with no party affiliation, or a write-in candidate, in order to qualify for nomination or election to office shall take and subscribe to an oath or affirmation in writing. A copy of the oath or affirmation shall be made available to the candidate by the officer before whom such candidate seeks to qualify and shall be substantially in the following form:

State of Florida

County of

Before me, an officer authorized to administer oaths, personally appeared (please print name as you wish it to appear on the ballot) , to me well known, who, being sworn, says that he or she is a candidate for the office of ; that he or she is qualified under the Constitution and laws of the United States to hold the office to which he or she desires to be nominated or elected; that he or she has qualified for no other public office in the state, the term of which office or any part thereof runs concurrent with that of the office he or she seeks; and that he or she will support the Constitution of the United States.

(Signature of candidate)

(Address)

Sworn to and subscribed before me this day of , (year) , at County, Florida.

(Signature and title of officer administering oath)

(b) In addition, any person seeking to qualify for nomination as a candidate of any political party shall, at the time of subscribing to the oath or affirmation, state in writing: 1. The party of which the person is a member.
2. That the person has not been a registered member of any other political party for 365 days before the beginning of qualifying preceding the general election for which the person seeks to qualify.
3. That the person has paid the assessment levied against him or her, if any, as a candidate for said office by the executive committee of the party of which he or she is a member.

(c) The officer before whom such person qualifies shall certify the name of such person to the supervisor of elections in each county affected by such candidacy so that the name of such person may be printed on the ballot. Each person seeking election as a write-in candidate shall subscribe to the oath prescribed in this section in order to be entitled to have write-in ballots cast for him or her counted.

(2) The provisions of subsection (1) relating to the oath required of candidates, and the form of oath prescribed, shall apply with equal force and effect to, and shall be the oath required of, a candidate for election to a political party executive committee office, as provided by law. The requirements set forth in this section shall also apply to any person filling a vacancy on a political party executive committee.
(3) This section does not apply to a person who seeks to qualify for election pursuant to ss.103.021 and 103.101.
History.—ss. 22, 23, ch. 6469, 1913; RGS 326, 327; CGL 383, 384; s. 3, ch. 19663, 1939; s. 3, ch. 26870, 1951; s. 10, ch. 28156, 1953; s. 1, ch. 57-742; s. 1, ch. 61-128; s. 2, ch. 63-269; s. 1, ch. 63-66; s. 1, ch. 65-376; s. 1, ch. 67-149; s. 2, ch. 70-269; s. 19, ch. 71-355; s. 6, ch. 77-175; s. 3, ch. 79-365; s. 27, ch. 79-400; s. 2, ch. 81-105; s. 3, ch. 86-134; s. 535, ch. 95-147; s. 7, ch. 99-6; s. 8, ch. 99-318; s. 15, ch. 2007-30; s. 10, ch. 2008-95; s. 13, ch. 2011-40.
Note.—Former ss. 102.29, 102.30.

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Author: bobhurt

See http://bobhurt.com

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