Campaign Finance Law & Reporting Services

California State Seal Sacramanto, California, Usa
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For over 40 years, Olson Remcho attorneys have leveraged their deep experience with federal, state, and local campaign finance law to provide clients with comprehensive, practical advice regarding the legal implications of candidates’ political action committees and Super Pac’s political activities.  The firm’s attorneys participated in the drafting of California’s state campaign finance provisions and regularly advise candidates, committees, and donors on its requirements.

Attorneys at Olson Remcho advise clients on the full range of legal issues surrounding campaign finance regulation. As distinctions between regulated and unregulated activity become more blurred and the overlap between federal, state, and local regulation increases, campaign finance has become more complex.  The elections and campaign finance arenas continue to undergo immense change by lawmakers and regulators, as well as through judicial decisions. The firm’s lawyers have a breadth of experience in ensuring full compliance with campaign finance laws and offer advice to ensure compliance with local campaign finance regulations, the California Political Reform Act, and federal campaign finance regulations.

Olson Remcho attorneys participated in the drafting of California’s state campaign finance provisions.

We also represent clients in litigation before state and federal courts and assist clients with audit and enforcement matters before the Federal Election Commission, California’s Fair Political Practices Commission, and local campaign finance regulatory agencies.  We have helped numerous local jurisdictions draft and update their campaign finance ordinances to accommodate changes in constitutional case law.  

In addition, the firm can also assist clients with obtaining legal advice and opinions from regulatory agencies, which can provide immunizing protection from subsequent enforcement actions.

Campaign Finance Law Services:

The firm’s campaign law services include:

  • Advising candidates, corporations, party committees, unions, nonprofits and others on state, local, and federal campaign activities.
  • Advising on issue advocacy and public sector involvement in ballot measure elections.
  • Breaking down complex rules governing nonprofit involvement in California elections and required donor disclosure rules.
  • Requesting advice from regulatory agencies on compliance with election, campaign, and political law requirements.
  • Soliciting formal opinions and advice letters from the Federal Election Commission, California Fair Political Practices Commission, Internal Revenue Service, and local ethics commissions that confer limited immunity from prosecution.
  • Seeking informal advice from administrative agency staff, monitoring regulatory activities by the Secretary of State, Federal Election Commission, California Fair Political Practices Commission, and local ethics commissions.

PAC, Campaign & Major Donor Reporting Services:

Olson Remcho assists a wide range of clients, including candidates, political action committees, nonprofit organizations, labor unions,  individuals, and others in complying with complex campaign reporting requirements and limitations under federal, state, and local laws.

The firm provides a unique combination of legal and campaign reporting services to ensure compliance with the reporting procedures of state and federal law, including the California Political Reform Act and the Federal Election Campaign Act.  Required reports are subject to review by the Fair Political Practices Commission and the Federal Election Commission.

We use an internet-based campaign reporting system which has been approved by the California Secretary of State for the required electronic filing of campaign reports under state laws.

Our political reporting unit is staffed by a trained and experienced staff of political reports specialists.  The unit itself and all reports produced in it are supervised and reviewed by the firm’s team of experienced attorneys.

Campaign Reporting Services:

The firm’s campaign reporting services include:

  • Receiving, depositing, and recording all receipts and monitoring contributions for compliance with federal, state, and local limits and prohibitions.
  • Maintaining and disbursing campaign funds at the client’s discretion.
  • Reconciling bank statements and providing clients with monthly financial statements.
  • Preparing and filing required campaign reports, including required 24-hour reports for contributions and independent expenditures.
  • Assisting with campaign reporting audits.
  • Providing notification of all filing deadlines.
  • Providing legally required notification to potential major donors who contribute to the campaign committee.

Representative Cases:

Washington State Grange v. Washington State Republican Party, 128 S. Ct. 1184 (2008).  Filed amicus brief in support of Washington Democratic Party challenge to change in primary rules.

 San Jose Silicon Valley Chamber PAC v. City of San Jose,  546 F.3d 1087 (9th Cir. 2008).  Filed amicus brief in support of challenge to local campaign finance restrictions.

The American Leadership Project.  Successfully defended a 527 advocacy group before the Federal Elections Commission and in a federal lawsuit challenging the group’s electioneering communications during the 2008 Presidential election.

Migden v. Fair Political Practices Commission, No. 2:08-CV-00486-EFB (E.D. Cal. 2008).  Won an injunction prohibiting the FPPC from enforcing a Political Reform Act provision that unconstitutionally restricted individuals from spending campaign funds left over from prior elections.

Californians For Fair Representation v. Superior Court,  138 Cal. App. 4th 15 (2006). Successful lawsuit to compel timely pre-election reporting of campaign contributions to ballot measures.

Franklin v. Correa, Orange County Superior Court, No. 03CC11220 (2004).  Successful anti-SLAAP motion brought against candidate’s opponent’s attempt to stop him from transferring campaign funds from a prior campaign committee. 

McConnell v. Federal Election Commission,  540 U.S. 93 (2003).  Challenge brought on behalf of the California Democratic Party and others to constitutionality of McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform law.

Governor Gray Davis Committee v. American Taxpayers Association, 102 Cal. App. 4th 449 (2002).  Represented Governor Gray Davis in case that established the standard for “express advocacy” versus “issue advocacy” in California.

National Committee of the Reform Party of the USA v. Democratic National Committee, 168 F.3d 360 (9th Cir. 1999).  Represented Democratic National Committee in defeating allegations that it violated federal campaign laws.

California ProLife Council Political Action Committee v. Scully, 164 F.3d 1189 (9th Cir. 1999).  Successfully challenged Proposition 208, a statewide campaign finance initiative.

Californians for Political Reform Foundation v. Fair Political Practices Commission, 61 Cal. App. 4th 472 (1998).  Challenge to FPPC regulation affecting contributions to political action committees.

Service Employees International Union v. Fair Political Practices Commission, 747 F. Supp. 580 (E.D. Cal. 1990).  Successfully challenged the constitutionality of Proposition 73, a statewide campaign finance initiative.