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The FEC's Prior Approval Rule

What you need to know about it

Associations that sponsor federal political action committees (PACs) can solicit contributions from a wide range of their employees and individual members. However, the Federal Election Commission’s “prior approval rule” limits an association’s ability to solicit contributions from employees of its corporate members. Associations seeking to grow their federal PACs need to understand which activities are covered by this rule as well as steps they can take to mitigate risks.  

What Is the Prior Approval Rule, and What Are the Risks?

An association may solicit contributions for its connected PAC from the association’s “restricted class” employees (i.e., its employees with managerial, supervisory, policymaking or professional responsibilities), its individual members and the family members of these individuals.

The association may also solicit contributions from a corporate member’s “restricted class” (i.e., the company employees listed above, along with its stockholders and family members), but only if it obtains the written prior approval of the corporate member. A separate approval is required for each calendar year.

Please select this link to read the complete article from ASAE’s Center for Association Leadership.

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