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Political Financing Handbook for Third Parties, Financial Agents and Auditors (EC 20227) – August 2019

8. Reporting

This chapter describes the financial reports that must be completed and submitted by set deadlines under the Canada Elections Act.

It covers the following topics:

For a timeline of interim reporting obligations, see Interim reporting requirements for a fixed-date general election and Interim reporting requirements for a general election held other than on a fixed date in Chapter 1, Reference Tables and Timelines.

Note: Forms and instructions are available on the Elections Canada website.

Reporting obligations for a fixed-date general election

Reports in this table must be submitted to Elections Canada by a third party representative.

Report Filing conditions What to report Deadline
General Form—Third Party Incurred expenses totalling $500 or more for regulated activities that take place during the pre election or election period Details about the third party for the registry Immediately5
General Form—Third Party Changes of registry information New information for the registry Without delay after the change
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return (pre-election period) Met the threshold2 for interim reporting between:
  • October 20, 2015 (the day after the previous general election), and
  • the day on which the third party became required to register
  • Contributions received between October 20, 2015, and the day on which the third party became required to register3
  • Expenses incurred during the above period for regulated activities that take place during the pre-election period3
5 days after the third party was required to register
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return (pre-election period) Met the threshold2 for interim reporting between:
  • October 20, 2015, and
  • September 14 or the last day of the pre-election period, whichever is earlier
  • Contributions received between October 20, 2015, to the last day of the pre-election period3
  • Expenses incurred during the above period for regulated activities that take place during the pre-election period3
September 15
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return (election period) Met the threshold2 for interim reporting between:
  • October 20, 2015, and
  • the 23rd day before election day
  • Contributions received for regulated activities between October 20, 2015, and the 23rd day before election day3
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that take place between June 30 and the 23rd day before election day3
21 days before election day
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return (election period) Met the threshold2 for interim reporting between:
  • October 20, 2015, and
  • the 9th day before election day
  • Contributions received for regulated activities between October 20, 2015, and the 9th day before election day3
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that take place between June 30 and the 9th day before election day3
7 days before election day
Third Party's Electoral Campaign Return Must be submitted by every registered third party
  • Contributions received for regulated activities between October 20, 2015, and election day4
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that take place between June 30 and election day
4 months after election day
Auditor's report Required if the third party incurred expenses totalling $10,000 or more for regulated activities Whether the third party's financial return presents fairly the information contained in the financial records 4 months after election day

Reporting obligations for a general election held other than on a fixed date

Reports in this table must be submitted to Elections Canada by a third party representative.

Report Filing conditions What to report Deadline
General Form—Third Party Incurred expenses totalling $500 or more for regulated activities that take place during the pre-election or election period Details about the third party for the registry Immediately5
General Form—Third Party Changes of registry information New information for the registry Without delay after the change
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return Met the threshold2 for interim reporting between:
  • October 20, 2015 (the day after the previous general election), and
  • the 23rd day before election day
  • Contributions received between October 20, 2015, and the 23rd day before election day3
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that take place between the start of the election period to the 23rd day before election day
21 days before election day
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return Met the threshold2 for interim reporting between:
  • October 20, 2015, and
  • the 9th day before election day
  • Contributions received between October 20, 2015 and the 9th day before election day3
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that take place between the start of the election period to the 9th day before election day3
7 days before election day
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return Must be submitted by every registered third party.
  • Contributions received for regulated activities between October 20, 2015, and the election day3
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that take place during the election period
4 months after election day
Auditor's report Required if the third party incurred expenses totalling $10,000 or more for regulated activities Whether the third party's financial return presents fairly the information contained in the financial records 4 months after election day
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return (election period) Met the threshold2 for interim reporting between:
  • October 20, 2015, and
  • the 9th day before election day
  • Contributions received for regulated activities between October 20, 2015, and the 9th day before election day3
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that take place between June 30 and the 9th day before election day3
7 days before election day
Third Party's Electoral Campaign Return Must be submitted by every registered third party
  • Contributions received for regulated activities between October 20, 2015, and election day4
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that take place between June 30 and election day
4 months after election day

Reporting obligations for a by-election

Reports in this table must be submitted to Elections Canada.

Report Filing conditions What to report Deadline
General Form—Third Party A person or group must register as a third party after incurring expenses totalling $500 or more for regulated activities that take place during the pre election period or the election period. Details about the third party for the registry Immediately5
General Form—Third Party Changes of registry information New information for the registry Immediately after a change of registry information
Third Party’s Electoral Campaign Return Must be submitted by every registered third party.
  • Contributions received for regulated activities between October 20, 2015 (the day after the previous general election), and election day4
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that take place during the election period
4 months after election day
Auditor's report Required if the third party incurred expenses totalling $10,000 or more for regulated activities Whether the third party's financial return presents fairly the information contained in the financial records 4 months after election day

Supporting documents

Third parties must keep the documents evidencing expenses. These include invoices, bank statements, deposit slips and cancelled cheques. Elections Canada might request documents evidencing expenses over $50 during the review of the third party returns and the third party is required to provide them.

Corrections

On review, Elections Canada may correct the Third Party's Electoral Campaign Return if the correction does not materially affect its substance.

Elections Canada may send a written request to the third party to correct or revise the Third Party's Electoral Campaign Return. In that case, the third party must submit the corrected or revised return within the specified period.

Requesting a filing deadline extension

The Canada Elections Act specifies deadlines for submitting reports. The third party may apply for an extension on the Third Party's Electoral Campaign Return if they cannot submit it on time.

Note: Third Party's Interim Campaign Returns (if required) are not eligible for extensions.

Extension requests
Third Party's Electoral Campaign Return Extension available from Elections Canada Additional extension available from Elections Canada Extension available from a judge
Original submission, including the auditor's report Yes No Yes
Corrected or revised, as requested by the third party Yes Yes Yes

Submitting a request for an extension

The third party has to send a request to Elections Canada for a filing deadline extension. The request must be received by Elections Canada within two weeks after the filing deadline.

Note: Only a judge may grant an extension requested more than two weeks after the deadline has passed.

Elections Canada will grant an extension unless the third party's failure to provide the document was deliberate or was the result of a failure to exercise due diligence.

If Elections Canada refuses to authorize an extension or if the third party is unable to file the required documents within the extended period, the third party may apply to a judge for an extension. Elections Canada must be notified of any such application.

Submitting reports to Elections Canada

Financial forms (with instructions) are available on the Elections Canada website in fillable PDF format.

Extension requests
How to send
  1. Sign the pages requiring signatures.
  2. Send the reports to Elections Canada by email (in PDF format), courier, mail or fax.
Email efr-rfe@elections.ca
Mail Elections Canada
30 Victoria Street, Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0M6
Fax Political Financing
1-888-523-9333 (toll-free)
1-819-939-1803

Notes:
- Documents submitted to Elections Canada have to be signed.
- It is recommended that the third party keep a copy of all documents submitted.