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Political Financing Handbook for Leadership Contestants and Financial Agents (EC 20195) – January 2022

About This Document

Introduction to the handbook

This handbook is designed to help leadership contestants, their financial agents and their leadership campaign agents in the financial administration of the leadership contestant's campaign.

This document is a general guideline issued pursuant to section 16.1 of the Canada Elections Act. It is provided for information and is not intended to replace the Act.

Elections Canada will review the contents of this handbook on a regular basis and make updates as required.

Note: The term "individual" used in this handbook refers to a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.

What's new in this release?

Release Where Title Summary
July 2022 Chapters 1 and 13 Contact information

Submitting reports to Elections Canada
Local fax number discontinued and deleted.
January 2022 All n/a Contribution limits for 2022 updated in tables and examples.
Chapter 2 What is commercial value? Added a note that an individual can make multiple contributions deemed to be nil but not as a way to circumvent contribution rules.
What is a directed contribution? New position that processing fees paid to the party are leadership campaign expenses rather than transfers.
Volunteer labour is not a contribution Content added from OGI 2019-01, Volunteer Labour, about conditional compensation and capital assets as gifts. New content added on supporting documents. Examples added and amended. Standardized with compensation of workers in Chapter 8.
Ineligible contributions New example of an ineligible contribution received in exchange for the purchase of goods.
Chapter 3 Types of loans Clarified that loans should have a term ending no later than three years after contest day.
Chapter 4 Party memberships purchased by the leadership contestant's campaign New section on the practice of leadership campaigns buying party memberships for supporters.
Irregular transfers New section on consequences of irregular transfers, as per OGI 2020-07, Irregular Transfers Between Affiliated Political Entities.
Chapter 6 Regulated fundraising events New content added on virtual events, as per OGI 2020-06, Regulated Fundraising Events.
Chapter 7 Who can incur an expense? Added a definition of what it means to incur an expense.
Chapter 8 Mass text messaging New section on telecommunications rules for text messages.
Cell phones New section on leadership contest expenses related to personal and campaign cell phones.
Campaign workers and related expenses New position that return trips after the contest period may be leadership contest expenses. New details on leadership contest expenses related to campaign workers. Standardized with volunteer labour in Chapter 2.
High-profile campaigners and invited guests New section on leadership contest expenses related to the participation of high-profile campaigners.
Chapter 9 Childcare Added examples of childcare expenses that may and may not be claimed as personal expenses.
Chapter 10 Meals and incidentals Clarified that a contestant's per diem can be a leadership contest expense if it is part of their compensation.
Chapter 12 Auditor's fees Deleted the statement that campaigns mistakenly filing an auditor's report are never eligible for a subsidy.
Replacement or repair of damaged property New section on excluding some expenses for damaged property from leadership contest expenses.
Chapter 13 Submitting reports to Elections Canada New process added for submitting reports online.

Contact information

Telephone Political Entities Support Network

Regular Hours
Monday to Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Eastern time)

Elections Canada General Enquiries
Email Political Financing Enquiries

Electronic Financial Return (EFR) Enquiries

Elections Canada General Enquiries
Mail Elections Canada
30 Victoria Street
Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0M6
Fax Political Financing
1-888-523-9333 (toll-free)