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The Ethics in Government Act requires Members, officers, and certain employees of the U.S. House of Representatives and related offices to file annual Financial Disclosure Statements on Form A with the Clerk of the House. The next annual Financial Disclosure Statement will cover 2012 and must be filed on or before May 15, 2013.
The Ethics in Government Act as amended by the STOCK Act requires Members, officers, and certain employees of the U.S. House of Representatives and related offices to file Periodic Transaction Reports (PTRs) with the Clerk of the House. In general, filers must report on a PTR each purchase, sale, or exchange transaction involving stocks, bonds, or other securities made by the filer (or for an asset the filer owns jointly with another person) when the amount of the transaction exceeds $1,000. A PTR is due within 30 days of you receiving notice of the transaction, but not more than 45 days after the transaction. For sales transactions, the $1,000 threshold is based on the total dollar value of the transaction, not the gain or loss made on the sale. Transactions in widely-held investments (for example, mutual funds and ETFs) are excluded from the reporting requirement, as well as any asset that is not required to be reported on your annual FD Statement. If you do not have reportable transactions, then no report is required.
Most Members, officers and employees who are otherwise required to file Financial Disclosure Statements must file a termination report on Form A within 30 days of the termination of their employment with the House. However, if the Member, officer, or employee has accepted another position in the federal government which requires the filing of a public financial disclosure statement, that person will not need to file a termination report, but will need to alert the Clerk of the House of Representatives in writing.
A new officer or employee of the Legislative Branch must file a Form B Financial Disclosure Statement within 30 day of assuming the new job if the employee has a starting salary at the above GS-15 rate or greater ($119,553.60 for 2013). If the Officer or employee is joining the House from another position in the federal government which required the filing of a public financial disclosure statement, and that person had a break in service of 30 days or less, that person will not need to file a new employee report, but will need to alert the Clerk of the House of Representatives in writing. The letter should indicate 1) the federal employer, 2) that the employee filed a federal public financial disclosure statement (FORM 278), and 3) that the employee had a break in service of 30 days or less.
Individuals are required to file a Financial Disclosure Statement once they “qualify” as a candidate by raising or spending more than $5,000 in a campaign for election to the House of Representatives. Both the office-seeker’s own funds and contributions from third parties count towards the threshold. An individual who never raises or spends more than $5,000 has no financial disclosure obligations with the House, even if that person’s name appears on an election ballot. All individuals who do meet this definition must file each year that they continue to be candidates. The deadline for filing the Financial Disclosure Statement depends on whether you qualify as a candidate in an election or non-election year.
If you qualify as a candidate during an election (generally an even-numbered) year, then you must file a Financial Disclosure Statement within 30 days of becoming a candidate or May 15 of that year, whichever is later. There are two exceptions to this general rule: First, a qualifying candidate must file no later than 30 days before any election (including primaries) in which the individual is participating. Thus, if you become a candidate on January 5 in an election year and the primary is on April 22, the report is due by March 23 (no later than 30 days before the election). Second, if a candidate crosses the $5,000 threshold within the 30-day period prior to an election, the candidate must file the Financial Disclosure Statement immediately after he or she raises or spends more than $5,000. Candidates in a special election also follow this filing rule.
If you qualify during a non-election (generally an odd-numbered) year, then you must file a Financial Disclosure Statement within 30 days of becoming a candidate or May 15 of that year, whichever is later. You are then required to file a subsequent Statement on May 15 of the following year if you are still a candidate on that date. If you lose a primary election before May 15, then you are not required to file the Statement.
A candidate who takes action that is recognized under applicable state law as legally sufficient to withdraw as a candidate before the date on which his or her Financial Disclosure Statement is due need not file a Statement. You must, however, notify the Clerk of the House in writing that you withdrew your candidacy prior to your filing deadline. You may use the “Withdraw/Under $5,000 Threshold Declaration Form” found at the link below to notify the Clerk.
Under $5,000 Threshold
If you receive a notice to file a Statement before you have raised or spent more than $5,000 on the campaign, you should notify the Clerk of the House in writing that the campaign has not yet crossed the $5,000 threshold. Once you cross the $5,000 threshold, you are obligated to file the Financial Disclosure Statement, within 30 days in most cases. Candidates who never exceed the $5,000 threshold are not required to file a Financial Disclosure Statement. You may use the “Withdraw/Under $5,000 Threshold Declaration Form” found at the link below to notify the Clerk.
A $200 late filing fee shall be assessed against any individual who files more than 30 days after the due date of a report or amendment (or the due date of any extension).
Please use the form at the bottom of this page to request an extension of time to file your financial disclosure statement:
Follow this link to the Clerk's Web site for Form A Financial Disclosure Software for Calendar Year 2013. If there is a problem with the use of this software or its installation on House-owned computers, please call the HIR Call Center at 56002 or 1-800-HIR-USER and the Call Center will assist in resolving the problem.
If you have questions concerning the reporting requirements or how to fill out your Financial Disclosure Statement, call or write the Committee on Ethics, 1015 Longworth House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515-6328, 202-225-7103.
Pre-Screening: The Committee's legal staff is also available to review forms in advance of filing for Members and other filers.
Extra copies of the forms (Form A for Members, Officers and Employees; Form B for Congressional Candidates and New Employees) and instruction booklet can be picked up at the Legislative Resource Center, B-106, Cannon House Office Building.