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Political Financing Handbook for Third Parties, Financial Agents and Auditors – June 2021

To be used for non-fixed-date general elections and by-elections

10. 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:

  • Reporting obligations for a non-fixed-date general election
  • Reporting obligations for a by-election
  • Submitting reports to Elections Canada
  • Requesting a filing deadline extension

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

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

Reporting obligations for a non-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 Registration: a person or group has conducted one or more regulated activities in the election period with combined expenses totalling $500 or more Details about the third party for the registry Immediately1
General Form—Third Party Change of registry information New information for the registry Without delay after the change
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return2 Met the threshold3 for interim reporting between:
  • October 22, 2019 (the day after the previous general election), and
  • the 23rd day before election day
  • Contributions received between October 22, 2019, and the 23rd day before election day for regulated activities
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that took place between the start of the election period and the 23rd day before election day
21 days before election day
Third Party's Interim Campaign Return2 Met the threshold3 for interim reporting between:
  • October 22, 2019, and
  • the 9th day before election day
  • Contributions received between October 22, 2019, and the 9th day before election day for regulated activities
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that took place between the start of the election period and the 9th day before election day
7 days before election day
Third Party's Electoral Campaign Return4 Must be submitted by every registered third party
  • Contributions received between October 22, 2019, and the last day of the election for regulated activities
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that took place during the election period
4 months after election day
Auditor's report Required if the third party incurs 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

1 Registration cannot take place before the election is called.

2 Do not include transactions already reported in an interim return or in the return for a prior election.

3 The third party has conducted regulated activities in the election period with combined expenses totalling $10,000 or more, or the third party has conducted regulated activities in the election period with combined expenses totalling $500 or more and has received contributions totalling $10,000 or more for regulated activities.

4 Do not include transactions already reported in a return for a prior election.

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 Registration: a person or group has conducted one or more regulated activities in the election period with combined expenses totalling $500 or more Details about the third party for the registry Immediately1
General Form—Third Party Change of registry information New information for the registry Immediately after a change of registry information
Third Party's Electoral Campaign Return2 Must be submitted by every registered third party
  • Contributions received between October 22, 2019 (the day after the previous general election), and the last day of the election for regulated activities
  • Expenses incurred for regulated activities that took place during the election period
4 months after election day
Auditor's report Required if the third party incurs 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

1 Registration cannot take place before the day the by-election is called.

2 Do not include transactions already reported in a return for a prior election.

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.

A third party may apply to Elections Canada to correct or revise its return, using the Request for Amendment form. The application must be made immediately after the third party becomes aware of the need for a correction or revision. An amended report must be submitted within 30 days after the correction or revision is authorized.

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 No
Corrected or revised, as requested by Elections Canada No No No*

*Corrections or revisions requested by Elections Canada are not eligible for extensions and must be filed within the specified period. However, the third party can apply to a judge to be relieved of the obligation of complying with the request.

Submitting a request for an extension

The third party may 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.

Options for submitting financial reports to Elections Canada
Online Log in
  • Log in to the Political Entities Service Centre at csep-pesc.elections.ca. (Use the email address that Elections Canada has on file for you in the Registry of Third Parties.)
  • Click on the Electronic Financial Returns tab.
Interim campaign return / Electoral campaign return
  • Upload the campaign return (in PDF format) and any supporting documents.
  • Follow the on-screen steps to apply digital consent and submit the return.
Extension and amendment requests
  • Sign the pages requiring signature and scan the form.
  • Upload the form (in PDF format) and any supporting documents
Note: When submitting online, there is no need to send physical copies by mail.
Mail or fax Any financial reports
  • Sign the pages requiring signature.
  • Send the reports to Elections Canada by courier, mail or fax.
  • Send supporting documents to Elections Canada by courier or mail.
Address

Elections Canada
30 Victoria Street, Gatineau, Quebec K1A 0M6

Fax

Political Financing
1-888-523-9333 (toll-free)
1-819-939-1803

Notes

  • When submitting by mail or fax, the person making the submission should give their name, role and the third party's name.
  • It is recommended that the third party keep a copy of all documents submitted.
  • The third party can print a confirmation of its submission and track the status of its financial return in the Political Entities Service Centre.