Third-party Campaigners

Third-party campaigners have legal obligations regarding election campaign finances, political donations and disclosures. Penalties may apply for non-compliance.

A  third-party campaigner is an individual or organisation that incurs more than $2000 in electoral communication expenditure for a State or local government election in NSW but does not stand as a candidate, and is not a political party or an elected member.

Third-party campaigners must register with the NSW Electoral Commission for an election and appoint a person as an Official Agent before incurring more than $2,000 in certain electoral expenditure for a State or Local Government election.

If a third-party campaigner also makes political donations, the third-party campaigner is also a political donor and must disclose certain political donations to the NSWEC. (See Political Donors).

Registration
A third-party campaigner must register with the NSWEC prior to incurring more than $2,000 in electoral communication expenditure during the capped State expenditure period for a State election or the local government expenditure period for a local government election.

Agents
A third-party campaigner must have an official agent who is legally responsible for managing and disclosing political donations and electoral expenditure on behalf of the third-party campaigner.

Political Donations
Third-party campaigners must comply with specific requirements when making or receiving political donations. Donations are subject to specified limits.

Electoral Expenditure
Third-party campaigners must comply with specific requirements when incurring electoral communication expenditure which is subject to specified limits for State elections.

Disclosure
The official agent of each third-party campaigner must disclose to the NSWEC all political donations made and received in a reporting period and all electoral communication expenditure incurred in a capped State expenditure period for a State election and a local government expenditure period for a local government election.

Campaign Accounts
Third-party Campaigners are required to keep a campaign account. The campaign account is used to make payments for electoral communication expenditure.

Record Keeping
Complete and accurate accounting records must be kept of political donations and electoral expenditure.