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California Laws | Election Code
DIVISION 16. ELECTIONS CONTESTS
CHAPTER 5. FORM OF CONTEST STATEMENT

16443. The defendant, after receipt of the copy of the affidavit, may file an answer and a cross-contest affidavit within five days. (5511)

16444. No special appearance, demurrer or objection may be taken other than by the affidavits which shall be considered a general appearance in the contest. (5512)

Article 4. Contests Involving a Recount (16460-16467) (5513)(Text)

16460. This article applies only to contests on the ground that due to mistake, error, or misconduct the votes in any precinct were so incorrectly counted as to change the result. (5514)

16461. The superior court of that county in which is located the precinct in which the contestant demands a recount has jurisdiction. (5515)

16462. No service other than as provided in this section need be made upon the defendant. The affidavit shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the superior court within five days after the completion of the official canvass. Upon the filing of the affidavit the county elections official shall forthwith post, in a conspicuous place in his or her office, a copy of the affidavit. Upon the filing of the affidavit and its posting, the superior court of the county shall have jurisdiction of the subject matter and of the parties to the contest. The contestant on the date of filing the affidavit shall send by registered mail a copy thereof to the defendant in a sealed envelope, with postage prepaid, addressed to the defendant at the place of residence named in the affidavit of registration of the defendant, and shall make and file an affidavit of mailing with the county elections official, which shall become a part of the records of the contest. (5516)

16463. All candidates at any primary election are permitted to be candidates under this code only upon the condition that jurisdiction for the purposes of the proceeding authorized by this article shall exist in the manner and under the conditions provided for by Section 16462. (5517)

16464. At any time within three days after the filing of the affidavit of the contestant to the effect that he or she has sent by registered mail a copy of the affidavit to the defendant, the defendant may file with the clerk of the superior court an affidavit in his or her own behalf, setting up his or her desire to have the votes counted in any precincts, designating them, in addition to the precincts designated in the affidavit of the contestant, and setting up his or her grounds therefor. On the trial of the contest all of the precincts named in the affidavits of the contestant and the defendant shall be considered, and a recount had with reference to all of those precincts. The contestant shall have the same right to answer the affidavit of the defendant as is given to the defendant with reference to the affidavit of the contestant except that the contestant's answer shall be filed not later than the first day of the trial of the contest. (5518)

16465. The defendant shall appear, either in person or by attorney, at the time and place fixed for the hearing, and shall take notice of the order fixing the time and place from the records of the court, without service. (5519)

16466. The defendant may not make any special appearance for any purpose except as provided in this article. Any appearance whatever of the defendant or any request to the court by the defendant or his or her attorney shall be entered as a general appearance in the contest. (5520)

No demurrer or objection may be taken by the parties in any other manner than by answer, and all the objections shall be contained in the answer. (5521)

16467. The court, if the defendant appears, shall require the answer to be made within three days from the time and place set for hearing. If the defendant does not appear the court shall note his default, and shall proceed to hear and determine the contest with all convenient speed. (5522)

CHAPTER 6. ELECTIONS OFFICIAL'S DUTIES (5523)(Text)

Article 1. Contest Procedures at General Elections (16500-16503) (5524)(Text)

16500. Within five days after the end of the time allowed for filing statements of contest, the clerk of the superior court shall notify the superior court of the county of all statements filed. The presiding judge shall forthwith designate the time and place of hearing, which time shall be not less than 10 nor more than 20 days from the date of the order. (5525)

16501. The clerk of the superior court shall thereupon issue a citation for the defendant to appear at the time and place specified in the order, which citation shall be delivered to the sheriff and served upon the party at least five days before the time so specified, by either of the following methods: (5526)

(a) Personally. (5527)

(b) If the party cannot be found, by leaving a copy at the house where he or she last resided. (5528)

16502. The clerk of the superior court shall issue subpoenas for witnesses at the request of any party, which shall be served as other subpoenas. The superior court may issue attachments to compel the attendance of witnesses who have been subpoenaed to attend. (5529)

16503. The contestant shall, in the first instance, be liable for the expenses involved in making any recount. He or she shall pay into court in advance each day a sum that the judge finds sufficient to pay all recount expenses that will have accrued by the end of that day. The sums paid shall be part of the costs. The elections official may pay each day the clerical assistants necessary for the recount from the amount advanced by the contestant without the necessity of the funds being first deposited with the county treasurer. (5530)

Article 2. Contest Procedures at Primary Elections: Contests Other Than Recount (16520-16521) (5531)(Text)

16520. The clerk of the superior court, within five days after the end of the time for filing affidavits, shall present all the affidavits to the presiding judge of the superior court. The presiding judge shall forthwith designate the time and place of hearing, which shall be not less than 10 nor more than 20 days from the date of the order. (5532)

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