Frequently Asked QuestionsThe topics listed below provide answers to commonly asked questions about the Lobbying Disclosure Contribution Reporting System.
Contribution System Accounts
How are new employees registered so they can file their contribution report?Granting access to the Contribution System is a multi step process. Registrants must first list the new employee on the LD-1 or LD-2 form to register them and file it. Then they must create a new account for the employee on the Contribution system if the individual does not already have a lobbyist ID and password. After the account has been created, the new employee must create their password and set the security questions for their account. Each new account is then reviewed by the Legislative Resource Center to ensure that the account is not a duplicate and that the individual has been properly registered. When the account is approved, the lobbyist ID and password are activated.
As the registrant, should I create a new account every time I register a new employee with my organization?
No. You should only create an account for employees who have never been registered before or who were not actively lobbying since 1/1/2008. Any lobbyist who was actively lobbying or newly registered after 1/1/2008 should have already have been assigned a lobbyist ID. If you create a new account for an employee who already has a lobbyist ID, it will most likely be rejected as a duplicate.
I am a lobbyist and I already have an ID and password, but I am working for a new employer. Do I need a new lobbyist account for the new firm?No. Lobbyist ID numbers, like the registrant ID number, is unique to each individual lobbyist and will stay assigned to that lobbyist as long as they are registered. While the lobbyist ID number is associated with your employer, it can be transferred to any other active registrant.
Can registrants transfer employees to other organizations?No. Registrants can only create new lobbyist accounts, which assigns the lobbyist ID to the individual. Once a lobbyist ID number has been assigned, only the lobbyist can update contact information or transfer their account to a new employer.
I created a new lobbyist account, but the lobbyist says they did not receive their activation email. How can I get the account activated?You must verify that you have entered the email address correctly for the lobbyist and that email from firstname.lastname@example.org is not being sent to the lobbyist’s junk mail folder. When you are sure the email address is correct and that the email is not being sent to junk mail, please contact the House Legislative Resource Center at (202) 226-5200 about resending the activation email.
I use an automatic spam filter on my email. How do I ensure that I will receive the activation email?You must add email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org to your list of accepted emails if you are using a spam filter. Some activation emails have bounced back to our server requiring a response from us to be accepted. These requests will not be responded to; you must contact your IT support staff if you need help in getting emails from the Contribution System accepted automatically.
Accessing the Contribution System
How do I sign into the system to file my report?Registrants will use the same ID and password that they use to file other Lobbying Disclosure reports. Lobbyists must be verified by their employer and set their own password to sign into the system.
Step by step instructions
I am an administrative assistant at a lobbying firm with 50 lobbyists. Can I submit a contribution report for each of our lobbyists along with the registrant contribution report?No. The law requires that each actively registered lobbyist certify their own report.
Several employees in my firm are responsible for filing quarterly reports. Can multiple employees sign into the Registrant’s account on the contribution system at the same time?No. Only one person at a time should sign into the system for the registrant.
Filing Contribution Report Requirements
I am a retired lobbyist. What steps are in place to make sure that I do not receive a non-filing notice erroneously?First, your former employer must list your name on line 23 of the LD-2 form to reflect your new status. Your former employer must then sign into the Contribution System, update the status on your account to inactive and enter an effective date that falls within the filing period that you were listed on line 23 of the LD-2 filing.
Recent Notice on Lobbyist Terminations
I am a lobbyist who is employed by more than one registrant. How many LD-203 forms am I required to file?You should file one LD-203 form as an individual lobbyist disclosing all your contributions.
If a registrant and its lobbyists terminate, does the terminated status for both transfer to the Contribution system?No. The registrant must file a termination report for each client, and sign into the Contribution System and update the status for each lobbyist to inactive with an effective date that falls within the reporting period that they inactivated the client.
I am a new lobbyist who was hired on February 1. The mid-year contribution reporting period covers activity that occurred from January 1 through June 30. Do I report my hiring date of February 1 or do I need to include contributions made in January?You must report all contributions you made as an actively registered lobbyist during the reporting period. If you were not an actively registered lobbyist in January, then you only need to report your contributions from your hiring date through the end of the reporting period.
As of June 30, I am leaving my firm and will no longer be a lobbyist. Do I still need to file the mid-year LD-203 since I won’t be at my firm when the report is due in July?Yes. You will still need to file the LD-203 report for any reporting period for which you were an active lobbyist.
I am a self-employed lobbyist. Do I need to file two LD-203 reports?Yes. You must file one contribution report as a registrant, and a second contribution report as an individual lobbyist.
Working with the Contribution Report Form
How can I access the LD-203 form to file my reports?You must sign into the system and click on the LD-203 tab in the header bar to access the form.
Is the form pre-populated like the LD-1 and LD-2 forms?Yes. When you sign into the system, the contribution form is pre-populated based on your account information for both Windows and Macintosh users.
How do I update pre-populated form information?If you are a registrant, you can only update the contact name using the Account Information screen. The registrant name and mailing address must be updated by filing an amended registration with updated information. If you are a lobbyist, you can update all of the information using the My Account screen.
Can I import FEC data into the form?No. FEC data cannot be directly imported into a contribution form. An import tool has been developed for IT professionals that will import XML data into registrant forms. If you are not familiar with XML or do not have the appropriate IT support to utilize the import tools that are provided, please use the contribution form to create and file your contribution reports. See Importing XML Data for more information
Do I need an electronic signature to sign and file my report?No. The system uses the ID and password you used to sign into the system to sign your form automatically when you submit your report.
Step by step instructions
I am a registrant. What name will be displayed when I sign and file my report?The name listed in the system as the contact person will be inserted as the individual who signed the report.
I am having problems entering or importing data in the form. What should I doThe help manual provides detailed instructions on how to use the form. It also contains a current list of reported problems and solutions. Please consult this manual to determine if the problem you are experiencing has a solution.
Step by step instructions
If you did not find an answer to your problem, please contact the Legislative Resource Center of the Office of Public Records for additional assistance.
Reviewing House and Senate Gift and Travel Rules
How can I review the House and Senate travel rules?The House gift and travel rules are available online from the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct website: http://ethics.house.gov/Media/PDF/2008_House_Ethics_Manual.pdf
The Senate gift and travel rules are available online from the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration website: Rules of the Senate
Locating Filed Contribution Reports
How can I check to see if all the lobbyists in my firm have filed their LD-203 reports?Filed contribution reports are available on the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives and Secretary of the U.S. Senate web sites.