A candidate is any individual who seeks to be nominated or elected to public office or party position, whether they ultimately appear on the ballot or not. An individual shall be deemed a candidate if:
- He or she has taken action to qualify for nomination or election; or-
- Monies were raised or expended by the individual or any person to whom that individual has given consent to do so, in order to bring about such nomination or election to such office or position. The candidacy occurs when the contributions or expenditures in question are made, whether in the year in which the nomination or election is sought or in any future year.
- Lt. Governor
- State Comptroller
- State Attorney General
- State Senate
- State Assembly
- State Supreme Court Justice
- Certain party offices
All other offices
New York City Candidates:
Have additional requirements
It is the obligation of the candidate to disclose ALL of the receipts and expenditures of his/her campaign including the candidate's own money. (EL 14-104(1).) He/she must register with the appropriate boards(s) of elections and then file campaign financial disclosure reports.
- Candidate Discloses All (does not have authorized committee disclosing all)
- Candidate Uses Authorized Committee to Disclose All
- Both Candidate and Authorized Committee Disclose
- What Must be Filed?
- Where & How are Reports Filed?
- When are Reports Filed?
- Village Requirements
Candidate Uses Authorized Committee to Disclose All
A candidate can choose to have an authorized committee fulfill all of the candidate’s campaign finance filing requirements of NYS Election Law, disclosing all the receipts of, contributions to, expenditures by, and liabilities of the campaign, including the candidate’s own money. In such an instance, the candidate can raise or spend money themselves, but such activity of the candidate (who becomes an agent of the committee) must be reported through his or her authorized committee. (EL 14-104(1).)
Additionally, the candidate must submit a Candidate Authorization for a Committee to Make ALL Campaign Financial Disclosures form (CF-16), which is the form that informs the board(s) of elections that the candidate has opted to have all the receipts of, contributions to, expenditures by, and liabilities of the campaign, including the candidate’s own money, disclosed by the authorized committee. In such an instance, the candidate would not have to submit his or her own campaign financial disclosure reports.
However, the mere fact that a candidate has an authorized committee fulfill all of the candidate’s campaign finance filing requirements of NYS Election Law, does not relieve the candidate of their obligations and related liabilities under the NYS Election Law concerning the financial activity of their campaign.
The CF-16 must be submitted by the candidate no later than 32 days prior to the first election for which the candidate would otherwise be obligated to file reports;
Candidate Discloses All (does not have authorized committee disclosing all)
A candidate can choose to file his or her own reports, setting forth the particulars specified in NYS Election Law Section 14-102, which must disclose all the receipts of, contributions to, expenditures by, and liabilities of the campaign, including the candidate's own money. (EL 14-10(1).)
To do so with NYSBOE, a candidate will file the Candidate Registration And/Or To Request NYSBOE Filer ID# and PIN Campaign Finance Form (CF-04). (For filing with local board(s) of elections, contact the appropriate board to determine any registration requirements.) Again, this is if the candidate does not have a registered authorized committee that will be disclosing all of the financial activity of the candidate's campaign, including the financial activity of the candidate;
Both Candidate and Authorized Committee Disclose
A candidate can choose to have an authorized committee, and can ALSO raise and spend money separate from the committee, which they choose not to have disclosed by the authorized committee. In such a case, BOTH the candidate and the authorized committee would register and file their own separate campaign financial disclosure reports, setting forth the particulars specified in NYS Election Law Section 14-102. In this case, a candidate should NOT file a Candidate’s Authorization for a Committee to Make All Campaign Financial Disclosures form (CF-16). A CF-16 is only filed by a candidate when ALL activity is filed by the authorized committee. (EL 14-104(1).) This is rarely used due to increased accounting required of the candidate.
Village elections run by the village clerk: Candidates for village office, and committees solely supporting or opposing candidates for village office or village ballot propositions must register and file with the village clerk when the village clerk runs the election.
For village elections run by the village clerk, where filers with the village clerk have campaign finance activity outside of the village election in question (e.g., supporting/opposing candidates and/or committees for town, county or state offices; transfers to party or constituted committees outside of the village), such filers will then also have an obligation to register and file with the appropriate county board of elections and/or NYSBOE.
Village elections run by a county board of elections: Registrations/filings must be made with the applicable county board of elections. Where the receipts or expenditures exceed or are expected to exceed $1,000 in the calendar year, including the candidate’s own money, then such registrations and filings must also be made with NYSBOE. (EL 14-102; 14-104.)
The $1,000 raised or spent relates to financial activity (receipts or expenditures) in the calendar year, not an ending cash balance.
Certain Village Candidates/Committees May Claim Exemption from Filing
The following candidates/committees may file a Candidate or Committee Claim of Exemption from Filing Campaign Financial Disclosure Reports (CF-05): Candidates for public office and authorized committees solely supporting one candidate for public office, or solely supporting or opposing a ballot proposition in towns, cities or villages having a population under 10,000, where the candidate/committee does not raise or spend in excess of $1,000 in the aggregate for the campaign. (EL 14-124.)
What Must be Filed?
Candidates who are required to file campaign financial disclosure reports must submit one of the following. (EL 14-102(3).):
Itemized Campaign Financial Disclosure Report
An itemized campaign financial disclosure report is a report disclosing the financial activity for a specific reporting period, detailed on applicable schedule(s), and where at the close of the reporting period, the aggregate of receipts or expenditures of the campaign, including the candidate’s own money, have exceeded $1,000.
Filing the Report Electronically
State candidates must register and file campaign financial disclosure reports electronically with NYSBOE using the EFS Software. The software is available on the website at www.elections.ny.gov.
Local candidates who raise or spend, or expect to raise or spend over $1,000 in a calendar year, including the candidate’s own money, must register with NYSBOE and with the appropriate local board(s) of elections and file campaign financial disclosure reports electronically with NYSBOE using the EFS Software available on the website at www.elections.ny.gov. Filing disclosure reports electronically with NYSBOE satisfies your filing requirement with the local board(s).
Filing the Report with the paper CF-01
An itemized report can be filed using the Campaign Financial Disclosure Report (CF-01). Note that filings must be made electronically, unless a waiver allowing filing on paper has been applied for and granted in writing or unless otherwise exempt if not exceeding the $1,000 threshold. (EL 14-102(4).)
In-Lieu-Of Statement (CF-01)
A campaign financial disclosure report where, at the close of the reporting period, neither the total receipts, including the candidate’s own money, nor the total expenditures of the campaign have exceeded $1,000 in the aggregate. (EL 14-124(4).) In Lieu-Of Statements can be filed using the Campaign Financial Disclosure Report (CF-01) or online using a Filer ID# and PIN at www.elections.ny.gov
Once a candidate that is entitled to file an In-Lieu-Of Statement exceeds the $1,000 threshold in aggregate receipts or expenditures for a campaign, he or she must begin to file itemized reports commencing with the reporting period wherein the threshold is crossed and contain an itemization of all receipts and expenditures previously encompassed by the In-Lieu-Of Statement(s) filed by the candidate. Once a candidate files an itemized report, that candidate can never file an In-Lieu-Of Statement for any future report.
No-Activity Report (CF-18)
A report filed indicating that there is no activity to report for that specific reporting period.
- For filers with NYSBOE: a Termination or Resignation Request Form/No-Activity Report Form (CF-18) can be submitted in hard copy with an original signature, or online using a Filer ID# and PIN at www.elections.ny.gov.
- For filers with a county or city board of elections filing on paper: to report no activity for a particular period, such filers should submit fully completed cover, summary and status pages of the Campaign Financial Disclosure Report (CF-01).
Claim of Exemption from Filing
Candidates may file a Candidate or Committee Claim of Exemption from Filing Campaign Financial Disclosure Reports form (CF-05) if one of the following pertains. (EL 14-124.):
- Candidates have not/will not receive or spend more than $50 for their campaign, including their own personal funds;
- Candidates for public office in a town, city or village having a population under 10,000, where the candidate does not raise or spend in excess of $1,000 in the aggregate on the campaign. This includes the personal funds of the candidate.
Note: If after submission of this form the basis for a claim of exemption becomes invalid due to a change in circumstance (e.g., exceeding monetary threshold or scope of candidate/committee activity requires filing), the candidate/committee must then file all applicable election reports.
Where and How are Reports Filed?
Candidates running for state offices and certain party offices, and the committees supporting or opposing those candidates, including party and constituted committees, must register and file with NYSBOE, unless exempt from filing. (EL 14-124; NYCRR 6200.1.)
Candidates running for local public and party offices, and the committees supporting or opposing those candidates, including local party and constituted committees, must register and file with the appropriate county or city board of elections. (NYCRR 6200.1(a)(2).), unless exempt from filing under NYS Election Law Section 14-124.
Local filers should contact the appropriate county or city board of elections for information on how to submit reports locally (i.e., paper or electronic).
Local filers who raise or spend, or expect to raise or spend more than $1,000 in any calendar year are also required to register and file campaign financial disclosure reports with NYSBOE, in addition to filing with the appropriate county or city board of elections. (EL 14-102(4); 14-104; NYCRR 6200.1(d).)
Any local filer required to file with NYSBOE, and who actually does so, will not have to make a duplicate filing with their county and/or city board(s) of elections. Their NYSBOE filing will satisfy their local filing obligation. (NYCRR 6200.1(d).)
New York City Candidates Have Additional Requirements
All New York City candidates for mayor, public advocate, comptroller, borough president and city council must register with the New York City Campaign Finance Board (CFB) , file periodic disclosure statements and observe CFB limits, in addition to complying with all New York State Board of Elections (NYSBOE) campaign financial disclosure requirements.
Candidates or potential candidates in New York City should contact the New York City Campaign Finance Board .
When are Reports Filed?
There are three election reports filed in connection with each Primary, General, or Special Election. These are due at the following times:
- 32 Day Pre-Election
- 11 Day Pre-Election
- 10 Day Post-Election for Primary Elections or 27 Day Post-Election for General or Special Elections.
Note: Candidates and/or their committees must file three election reports for all elections in which the candidate appears on the ballot. This is also applicable when an "opportunity to ballot" petition has been filed for a primary election. Any candidate that will not, in any way, support or oppose a candidate or issue on the ballot for a particular election will not have to file any reports for that election.
These reports are filed on January 15th and July 15th each year, or as specified in the annual Filing Calendar. All committees must file periodic reports until they qualify for and file a termination report.
Copies of Campaign Materials must be submitted with each applicable Post-Election report. This includes a copy of all broadcast, cable or satellite schedules and scripts, internet, print and other types of advertisements, pamphlets, circulars, flyers, brochures, letterheads and other printed matter. Photos may be submitted in lieu of actual items.
24 Hour Notice - any contribution or loan which exceeds $1,000.00, and which is received after the cut-off date for filing the 11 day Pre-Election report but before Election Day, must be reported within 24 hours of receipt. Filers with NYSBOE may file a 24 Hour Notice on-line or in writing either by fax or hand delivery to the appropriate Board. NYSBOE's fax number is (518) 486-6627. Local boards fax numbers. Any contribution/loan for which you sent a 24 hour notice must also be disclosed in the Post-Election report.