Guidance for political parties
We regulate the finances of political parties and maintain the registers of political parties in Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Political parties must follow certain rules set out in law.
Our guidance is here to help parties comply with the rules. You do not have to follow this guidance, but if you do, you will normally be doing enough to comply with the law.
Our guidance covers:
- How to register a party or maintain your party's details
- Reporting donations and loans in Great Britain
- Reporting donations and loans in Northern Ireland
- Reporting campaign spending
- Submitting your party's accounts
Looking for a form?
You can submit all forms online – use PEF Online.
Alternatively you can find a full list of our forms for political parties.
European Parliamentary election guidance
We have published our guidance for the European Parliamentary elections scheduled to take place on 23 May 2019.
The elections will take place in other EU Member States between Thursday 23 and Sunday 26 May 2019.
The regulated period for political parties and non-party campaigners will extend back to 23 January 2019.
Changes to the law
The UK government has changed the law on who can donate or lend money to UK registered political parties. From the date of the UK’s departure from the EU, donations and loans can no longer be accepted from:
- companies incorporated in another EU member state
- individuals and organisations based in Gibraltar
There is an exception for parties on the Northern Ireland register, and regulated donees in Northern Ireland. The laws has not changed for them on accepting donations and loans from individuals and organisations based in the Republic of Ireland.
It remains possible for the UK government to defer, revoke or change these new laws. Party treasurers and regulated donees must make sure that they know the up to date position before accepting donations or loans that might be affected. We will update our website as soon as we know more.
Key dates for 2019
As part of regulating party finance and maintaining transparency, parties must submit financial reports on donations, loans and expenditure by certain dates. Parties are also under a duty to confirm their details and renew their registration every year. Below you can find the deadline dates for the main reporting requirements for political parties in 2019.
|30 January 2019||Deadline for submitting Quarter 4 (1 October 2018–31 December 2018) donations and loans reports|
|30 April 2019||
Deadline for submitting Quarter 1 (1 January 2019-31 March 2019) donations and loans reports|
Deadline for statement of accounts (income and expenditure below £250k) for year end 31 December 2018
|2 May 2019||Polling day - local elections in England|
|7 July 2019||Deadline for statement of accounts (income or expenditure over £250k) for year end 31 December 2018|
|30 July 2019||Deadline for submitting Quarter 2 (1 April 2019–30 June 2019) donations and loans report|
|30 October 2019||Deadline for submitting Quarter 3 (1 July 2019–30 September 2019) donations and loans report|
|30 January 2020||Deadline for submitting Quarter 4 (1 October 2019–31 December 2019) donations and loans report|