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Election advertising handbook for Third Parties, Financial Agents and Auditors (EC 20227) – July 2015

Roles and Responsibilities

This chapter covers the following topics:

Introduction

A third party must appoint a financial agent before applying for registration. In addition, a third party has to appoint an auditor if it incurs election advertising expenses totalling $5,000 or more. This chapter discusses these appointments and the responsibilities of the appointees.

2.1 Appoint a financial agent

Financial agent

The third party must appoint a financial agent before applying for registration.

The financial agent of a third party is responsible for administering its financial transactions related to election advertising transmitted during the election period and for reporting them as required by the Canada Elections Act.

A third party may have only one financial agent at a time.

Eligibility

Who can become a financial agent of a third party?

Who is not eligible to act as a financial agent?

Appointment process

The third party's application for registration must include the name, address and telephone number of the financial agent and a declaration signed by the financial agent accepting the appointment.

If for any reason the financial agent is no longer able to continue in that role, the third party must appoint a new financial agent immediately. The third party must provide Elections Canada with the new financial agent's name, address and telephone number, and the new financial agent's signed declaration accepting the appointment.

The financial agent's responsibilities and obligations
Best practices for financial management

It is strongly recommended that the financial agent put in place effective controls for monitoring election advertising expenses to ensure that the election advertising expenses limit is not exceeded. One good practice is to introduce a purchase requisition form that requires every purchase to be authorized by the financial agent.

The financial agent should insist that he or she be kept informed of the financial transactions of the third party with regard to election advertising and should intervene to address any non-compliance in a timely fashion.

2.2 Appoint an auditor

Auditor

The third party must appoint an auditor if it incurs election advertising expenses totalling $5,000 or more. This may become necessary before or after registration.

Eligibility

Who can become an auditor of a third party?

Who is not eligible to be an auditor?

Appointment process

If the third party appoints an auditor, it must immediately provide Elections Canada with the auditor's name, address, telephone number and occupation, and his or her signed declaration accepting the appointment.

If for any reason the auditor is no longer able to continue in that role, the third party must appoint a new auditor immediately. The third party must provide Elections Canada with the new auditor's name, address, telephone number and occupation, and the new auditor's signed declaration accepting the appointment.

The auditor's responsibilities and obligations

If the third party incurs election advertising expenses totalling $5,000 or more, an auditor's report must accompany the third party's election advertising report.

The auditor has a right to access all documents of the third party, and may require the third party to provide any information or explanation that is necessary to enable the auditor to prepare the report.

The auditor has to examine the third party's accounting records and give an opinion in a report as to whether the third party's election advertising report presents the information contained in the accounting records on which it is based.

For more about preparing the auditor's report, please refer to details provided by the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada. A link to this information is posted on the Elections Canada webpage for third parties.

The auditor's fee

The Canada Elections Act does not provide for a subsidy in relation to audit services for registered third parties.