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Political Financing Handbook for Candidates and Official Agents (EC 20155) – December 2023

About This Document

Introduction to the handbook

This handbook is designed to help candidates and their official agents in administering the candidate's campaign before, during and after an election.

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: In this handbook, the term "individual" refers to a Canadian citizen or permanent resident when used in the context of contributions or loans.

What's new in this release?

Release Where Title Summary
December 2023 All n/a Contribution limits for 2024 updated in tables and examples.
Chapter 1 Important reminders for candidates and their official agents Reminders were simplified and reformatted.
Chapter 2 Closing the candidate's campaign Clarified that a confirmed candidate who withdraws must still meet financial and reporting obligations.
Chapter 3 Accepting and recording contributions Clarified that a contributor's business address cannot be recorded in place of their home address.
Remitting anonymous contributions that cannot be accepted

Returning ineligible or non-compliant contributions
Added the option to remit contributions by bank transfer.
Chapter 7 Regulated fundraising events Added details on reporting an event location and returning contributions, as per OGIs 2022-04, Disclosing the Location of a Regulated Fundraising Event and 2023-01, Regulated Fundraising Events.
Chapter 9 Traditional election advertising

Election signs
Clarified that the blackout period does not apply to putting up signs or non-web banners on election day.
Websites and web content Clarified that web content shared by an affiliated political entity is reported by only one entity.
Voter databases, surveys and research

Parliamentary database of a member of Parliament
New position that use of existing voter database software is an election expense. Added content as per OGI 2022-03, Voter Databases and Election Expenses.
Cell phones New position that only the incremental cost to use a personal cell phone during an election may be an election expense.
Campaign workers and related expenses Added content on providing gifts cards to cover incidental expenses.
Chapter 12 Reimbursement for a judicial recount New section on applying for a reimbursement of recount costs.
Chapter 14 Activities to close out the campaign New section on the treatment of closing activities as other electoral campaign expenses.
Chapter 15 Parliamentarians or other candidates campaigning for a local candidate New example of candidates campaigning for each other at the suggestion of the party.
Candidates campaigning for the registered party New section on reporting expenses when a candidate goes on tour for the party.
Chapter 17 Supporting documents New section on documents that must be submitted with financial returns.
Chapter 18 Reimbursements and overpayments Added a reminder to provide adequate supporting documents for a reimbursement.
Chapter 20 If the official agent is aware of a surplus Section deleted because it is not used in practice.

Contact information

Political Entities
Support Network

TTY: 1-800-361-8935

Political financing and registration questions:

Portal and election support:

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

Elections Canada
General Enquiries

TTY: 1-800-361-8935


30 Victoria Street
Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0M6