Political Financing Handbook for Candidates and Official Agents (EC 20155) – February 2018
Note: This handbook is to be used for elections called before June 13, 2019. For later elections, please use the November 2019 version of the handbook.
15. Disposing of Surplus
This chapter explains what a surplus of campaign funds is, the rules for disposing of a surplus after all financial obligations have been met, and how to report the disposal. It covers the following topics:
- What is a surplus?
- Transfer or sale of capital assets
- Notice of surplus from Elections Canada
- If the official agent is aware of a surplus
- How to dispose of a surplus
- Candidate's Statement of Surplus
What is a surplus?
The surplus amount of electoral funds is the amount by which the candidate's electoral revenues exceed the total of the candidate's electoral campaign expenses paid and transfers made by the candidate's campaign.
The amount of the surplus should equal the money left in the campaign bank account after all the financial obligations have been met.
|Electoral revenues||Electoral campaign expenses||Transfers made|
||For the purpose of calculating the surplus, includes all expenses paid using campaign funds:
||Any funds the candidate's campaign transfers to:
Transfer or sale of capital assets
Capital asset means any property with a commercial value of more than $200 that is normally used outside an election period other than for the purposes of an election.
If the campaign has any capital asset whose purchase constitutes an electoral campaign expense, the official agent must either transfer the asset to the registered party or the registered association, or sell the asset at fair market value and include the funds in the surplus disposition.
Notice of estimated surplus from Elections Canada
After the review and the payment of the final reimbursement and the auditor's subsidy, in some cases it is determined that the candidate has a surplus of electoral campaign funds. Elections Canada sends a notice about the estimated amount of the surplus to the candidate's official agent.
The official agent has to dispose of the surplus within 60 days of receiving the notice.
If the official agent is aware of a surplus
If the official agent is aware of a surplus of electoral funds but has not yet received a notice from Elections Canada, the official agent has to dispose of the estimated surplus within 60 days after:
- receiving the final reimbursement, or
- filing the candidate's return, if the candidate did not receive a reimbursement
How to dispose of a surplus
If the candidate was endorsed by a registered party, surplus funds have to be transferred to the registered party or to a registered association of that party in the candidate's electoral district.
Independent and non-affiliated candidates have to transfer surplus funds to Elections Canada by issuing a cheque payable to the Receiver General for Canada.
Candidate's Statement of Surplus
The official agent has to submit the Candidate's Statement of Surplus / Amended Campaign Return form within seven days after disposing of the surplus.
In some cases, amendments are also made to the original candidate's return to report financial transactions that occurred since the date the return was submitted. In these cases, any new financial transactions reported in the Candidate's Statement of Surplus / Amended Campaign Return will be treated as a request to correct or revise the Candidate's Electoral Campaign Return and Elections Canada will update the return accordingly.
Note: Elections Canada publishes the notice referring to the disposal of the surplus on its website.
For details about closing the candidate's campaign, please see Closing the candidate's campaign in Chapter 1, Reference Tables and Timelines.