Annual returns for nominated entities

Registered political parties (RPPs) can appoint an organisation as its nominated entity. Parties cannot have more than one nominated entity.

Gifts between a party and its nominated entity are not considered political donations.

To be a nominated entity, an organisation must be:

  • an incorporated body that operates for the benefit of a party, but does not have voting rights in it
  • appointed by a party by submitting a Nominated entity form to us.

Annual returns

An annual return is a summary of money received, spent, and owed by a political participant in a financial year. For nominated entities the return relates to your state campaign account. More information about state campaign accounts.

We use annual returns to check that nominated entities are complying with all funding and disclosure laws. This includes disclosing relevant political donations.

Division 3C of Part 12 of the Electoral Act 2002 outlines the annual return requirements.

Do nominated entities need to submit an annual return?

Yes. Your registered agent (the party's registered officer) must submit a return regardless of whether the entity received any political donations or incurred any political expenditure.

Only information about your state campaign accounts is required. More information about state campaign accounts. You must submit a nil return if you have nothing to report about your state campaign account.

When are returns due?

20 October each year.

Submissions are open from 1 July.

How do I submit a return?

On VEC Disclosures. You need to set up an account before you can submit your return.

Help with VEC Disclosures

If you have any questions email disclosures@vec.vic.gov.au or call 131 832.

What information is required?

In relation to your state campaign accounts for the financial year (including GST):

  • total income
  • total disclosed political donations
  • total undisclosed political donations (under the disclosure threshold)
  • the number of undisclosed political donors for the total undisclosed political donations
  • total amounts received other than political donations
  • total expenditure
  • outstanding debts.

See explanation of requirements below for details about each of these items. 

Your annual return must be audited and include a certificate of audit from an independent auditor. See audit requirments below.

You must supply copies of the following documents with your annual return:

  • a loan, grant or donation statement under section 237 of the Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Act 2009 (Cth) (Fair Work (RO) Act)
  • a general-purpose financial statement under section 253 of the Fair Work (RO) Act
  • financial statements under section 102 of the Associations Incorporation Reform Act 2012 (Vic)
  • a financial report under section 319 or 320 of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) (Corporations Act)
  • any financial report prescribed by the regulations.

If these documents are not available when you submit your return you must provide them as soon as possible once they are ready.

Explanation of requirements

  • Nominated entities of registered political parties
    Term Details

    Financial year

    The reporting range for the annual return is 1 July to 30 June (inclusive).

    Total income

     

    This amount is the total overall amount received by, or on behalf of, the nominated entity and includes the amounts disclosed in 'Total disclosed political donation', 'Total undisclosed political donations' and 'Total amounts received other than political donations'

    Total disclosed political donations

     

    The total amount of disclosed political donations that appear on VEC Disclosures. These disclosed political donation amounts must also be included in the 'Total income' field.

    When completing the annual return in VEC Disclosures this field is automatically populated and cannot be edited.

    Total undisclosed political donations

     

    The total amount of political donations received, that have not been disclosed via the VEC Disclosures, including small contributions and funds raised under the disclosable threshold. These undisclosed political donation amounts must also be included in the 'Total income' field.

    If the sum of all political donations received from a person or entity during a financial year is equal to or above the disclosure threshold, the annual return must include the following details:

    • the full name of the person or entity from whom the amount was received
    • the address of the person or entity from whom the amount was received (unless the individual is a silent elector, in which case the address must not be recorded)
    • the sum of the amount received.

    Number of donors for undisclosed political donations

    The number of individual donors that made a political donation under the disclosable threshold for the financial year.

    Total amounts received other than political donations

     

    Total amounts received other than political donations are all amounts received by, or on behalf of, the nominated entity that do not require disclosure. For example, dividends on shares, income of real estate holdings, deposits made to the recipient through a deceased estate or funding.

    These examples are acceptable monetary transactions that are not political donations.

    If the sum of all amounts received other than political donations from a person or entity during a financial year is equal to or above the disclosure threshold, the annual return must include the following details:

    • the full name of the person or entity from whom the amount was received
    • the address of the person or entity from whom the amount was received (unless the individual is a silent elector, in which case the address must not be recorded)
    • the sum of the amount received.

    Total expenditure

     

    Total expenditure is the total amount of expenses incurred by, or on behalf of, the nominated entity.

    Total outstanding debts

     

    Total outstanding debts incurred by, or on behalf of, the nominated entity.

    If the sum of all outstanding debts to a person or entity during a financial year is equal to or above the disclosure threshold, the annual return must include the following details:

    • the full name and address of the person or entity to whom the amount of the debt is owed (unless the individual is a silent elector, in which case the address must not be recorded)
    • the sum of the amount that is owed
    • whether the amount of the debt is to a financial institution or non-financial institution.

    What about…

    Funding amounts

     

    Funding amounts must be reported on the annual return. These amounts are required in the 'Total income' field, as well as the 'Total amounts received other than political donations' field.

    Fundraising amounts

     

    Amounts received as profit through fundraising must be included in the Total income field. It must also be included in the 'Total disclosed political donations' field or the 'Total undisclosed political donations' field depending on whether the profit amount received from each person was under or over the disclosure threshold.

    Goods and Services Tax (GST)

    Where a sum includes GST, the reported amount must include the GST.

    Small contributions

    Small contributions must be included in the 'Total income' as well as the 'Total undisclosed political donations' fields.

  • Audit requirements

    Your return must be audited and include a certificate of audit from an independent auditor. This certificate must state the return has been audited according to Australian Accounting Standards as specified in s. 334(1) of the Corporations Act.

    The certificate must state the auditor:

    a) was given full and free access at all reasonable times to all accounts, records, documents and papers relating directly or indirectly to any matter required to be specified in the statement; and
    b) examined the material referred to in paragraph (a) for the purpose of giving the certificate; and
    c) received all information and explanations that the auditor requested in respect of any matter required to be specified in the statement; and
    d) has no reason to believe that any matter stated in the statement is not correct.

    We encourage you to give your auditor this audit certificate template (PDF).

    Can the public see our annual return?

    Yes. We are required to publish an annual return summary on VEC Disclosures by 31 December each year.

    We do not publish donor addresses as they are confidential.

    What happens if I don’t submit an annual return?

    If a political party does not submit an annual return for its nominated entity, the registered officer may be fined.

    The fine is 200 penalty units.