Guidance for (Acting) Returning Officers administering a UK Parliamentary election in Great Britain

Accounting for the election

UK Parliamentary elections are funded by the UK Government and claims for fees and charges for the election are administered through the Elections Claims Unit, which is part of the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC). Detailed guidance and instructions for accounting for the election will be provided by DLUHC.

Contact details for the Elections Claims Unit are as follows:

Electoral Claims Unit, DLUHC
Second Floor, Rosebery Court
St Andrews Business Park
Central Avenue
Norwich
NR7 0HS

Please contact returningofficers.expenses@levellingup.gov.uk for more information. 

Payment of creditors  

You should keep receipts, purchase orders and invoices received before and throughout the election period for all services/work provided, and pay all creditors as soon as possible after the election.

Payment of fees to staff

Income tax

Under tax rules a standard starter checklist, which is issued at the time of appointment, must be completed by all staff working directly for the (Acting) Returning Officer. It needs to be completed only once rather than reviewed every year. You will need to issue a P60 form to the employee at the end of the tax year. 

If you terminate the employment of any of your casual staff following the election and issue them with a P45, then any returning casual staff who work at future elections will need to complete a new standard starter checklist at each new election.  

HMRC real-time information

All election payments made will be subject to HMRC’s real-time information tax payment system. You should ensure that you liaise with your local authority’s finance and HR departments to ensure that you can comply with the tax rules for all your employees, including any temporary and short-term contract staff. Further guidance is available from HMRC

Automatic enrolment into a workplace pension

All employers with staff working in the UK must comply with automatic enrolment requirements. Further guidance is available from the Pensions Regulator.

Last updated: 19 December 2023