Quick guide to registered and unregistered parties

Registered parties Unregistered parties
Can contest the party vote at general elections and stand electorate candidates at general elections and by-elections Can stand electorate candidates at general elections and by-elections
Can have a party logo next to the party and candidate names on the ballot paper at a general election or by-election Cannot have a party logo on the ballot paper, but can have the name of the party under its electorate candidate(s)
Is able to spend up to the party expense limit at a general election
For example, in the 2017 general election the expense limit was $1,115,000 if the party contested the party vote, plus $26,200 for each electoral district contested by a candidate for the party
Each candidate that stands for an unregistered party can spend up to the electorate candidate limit
For example, in the 2017 general election each electorate candidate that stood for an unregistered party could spend $26,200
If the unregistered party pays for candidate advertising published during the regulated period this will count towards the candidate’s limit
Must file an audited party expenses return after each general election, even where the party does not contest the election or incur election expenses N/A
Can apply for a share of the broadcasting allocation to purchase advertising time on television, radio and the internet in the month before election day N/A
Must file an audited return of party donations and loans every year by 30 April N/A
Must appoint and retain an auditor N/A
Must declare party donations and loans of more than $30,000 (alone or in aggregate from the same person) within 10 working days of receipt N/A
Must keep records of election expenses for three years after an election Each candidate must keep their own records and file a return of expenses and donations
Must maintain at least 500 current financial members who are eligible to enrol at all times and submit a statutory declaration by 30 April each year confirming the party continues to satisfy this requirement N/A
Must provide the Commission with a copy of the party’s rules for publication online and submit an up-to-date version when there are any changes May be asked to provide a copy of the party rules when candidates contest an election on the party’s behalf
Contact details for the party and its party secretary are published on the Commission’s website N/A