Information for donors

Am I a donor?

You are a donor if you make a political donation to a person or organisation for a Victorian State political purpose. 
These are:

What is a political donation?

A political donation is any gift you make to:

What is and isn’t a gift?

Gifts include:

  • money
  • services (including labour paid by a third party)
  • loans
  • guarantees
  • property (including loan of assets).

Gifts do not include:

  • gifts made in a private capacity for personal use
  • annual subscriptions to political parties
  • annual affiliation fees to political parties
  • annual levies to political parties
  • gifts between a registered political party and its nominated entity
  • gifts made for Commonwealth (federal) electoral purposes
  • volunteer labour
  • labour shared between branches
  • property used by a shared labour resource between branches (e.g. a telephone used by a worker). 

What is an associated entity?

Associated entities are organisations that are connected to one or more registered political parties. They fit at least one of the following:

  • they are controlled by one or more parties
  • they operate wholly, or to a significant extent, for the benefit of the parties
  • they are a financial member of one or more parties
  • they have voting rights in one or more parties. 

What is a nominated entity?

Nominated entities are organisations or trustees appointed by a registered political party. They operate only for the benefit of the party.

A registered political party can only have one nominated entity.

See the Register of Nominated Entities

What is a third-party campaigner?

A third party campaigner is a person or an organisation that receives political donations or spends more than the general donation cap per financial year for the purpose of helping promote or oppose a candidate, elected member or registered political party at an election (known as political expenditure).

A third-party campaigner is not:

  • a registered political party
  • a candidate at an election
  • a group
  • an elected member
  • an associated entity 
    or
  • a nominated entity of a registered political party. 

When do I disclose a political donation?

You must disclose donations equal to or more than the disclosure threshold via VEC Disclosures within 21 days of making the donation.

Disclose a political donation

Are there any limits on how many political donations I can make?

There are limits on some political donations, including:

  • a general cap on the amount that any one donor can give to any one recipient*
  • a donor can give to a maximum of six third-party campaigners.

* For the purposes of this limit, a registered political party, its endorsed candidates, groups, elected members and nominated entity (if it has one) are all considered one recipient.

These limits apply within an election period.

What is an election period?

An election period is the period between two State elections. The next State election will be held in November 2022.

Multiple political donations

You must disclose multiple donations to a single recipient if they are equal to or more than the disclosure threshold or more in a financial year.

The following are considered a single recipient:

  • a registered political party
  • its endorsed candidates
  • its groups of Upper House candidates
  • its elected members
  • its nominated entity.

Members of a group of independent candidates are also considered a single recipient.

This means donors cannot give more than the general cap each to several candidates endorsed by the same party, nor to each member of a group of independent candidates.

Are there penalties for making a political donation not allowed by the laws?

If you make a political donation not allowed by the laws and the recipient accepts it, the donation will be recovered by the VEC and given up to the State.

This includes:

  • donations above the general cap 
  • foreign donations
  • anonymous donations equal or more than the disclosure threshold
  • donations from a donor to more than six third-party campaigners.

You may be fined, go to prison, or both if you make or receive: 

The fine for this is more than $49,000. The prison term is up to two years.

It is also an offence to knowingly attempt to make or receive a banned donation or avoid a disclosure requirement under the law. For example, setting up a regular, small payment that would add up to more than the disclosure threshold over a period of time.

The penalty for this is up to 10 years’ prison.

Make and view disclosures

Visit the online disclosure system, VEC Disclosures, to disclose a political donation you have made or received. You can also view donations that have been disclosed or submit an annual return.
VEC Disclosures is best viewed in Chrome.

Go to VEC Disclosures
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