All contributions to federal candidates from nonconnected committees during the 2017-2018 election cycle are subject to the following limits:
- $5,000 per candidate, per election, from a nonconnected committee that qualifies as a multicandidate committee.
- $2,700 per candidate, per election, from any other PAC.
Super PACs cannot make contributions, and a Hybrid PAC cannot use funds from its non-contribution account to make a contribution.
Contribution limits for 2017–2018 federal elections
|Candidate committee||PAC† (SSF and nonconnected)||Party committee: state/district/local||Party committee: national||Additional national party committee accounts‡|
|Donor||Individual||$2,700* per election||$5,000 per year||$10,000 per year (combined)||$33,900* per year||$101,700* per account, per year|
|Candidate committee||$2,000 per election||$5,000 per year||Unlimited transfers||Unlimited transfers|
|PAC: multicandidate||$5,000 per election||$5,000 per year||$5,000 per year (combined)||$15,000 per year||$45,000 per account, per year|
|PAC: nonmulticandidate||$2,700* per election||$5,000 per year||$10,000 per year (combined)||$33,900* per year||$101,700* per account, per year|
|Party committee: state/district/local||$5,000 per election||$5,000 per year||Unlimited transfers||Unlimited transfers|
|Party committee: national||$5,000 per election**||$5,000 per year||Unlimited transfers||Unlimited transfers|
* Indexed for inflation in odd-numbered years.
† “PAC” here refers to a committee that makes contributions to other federal political committees. Independent-expenditure-only political committees (sometimes called “Super PACs”) may accept unlimited contributions, including from corporations and labor organizations.
‡ The limits in this column apply to a national party committee’s accounts for: (i) the presidential nominating convention; (ii) election recounts and contests and other legal proceedings; and (iii) national party headquarters buildings. A party’s national committee, Senate campaign committee and House campaign committee are each considered separate national party committees with separate limits. Only a national party committee, not the parties’ national congressional campaign committees, may have an account for the presidential nominating convention.
**Additionally, a national party committee and its Senatorial campaign committee may contribute up to $47,400 combined per campaign to each Senate candidate.
Gifts of money
Monetary contributions exceeding $100 must be made by check or other written instrument drawn on the nonconnected committee’s account.
Purchase of fundraising items and tickets
A nonconnected committee may purchase tickets to a fundraising event held by a candidate’s committee, or it may purchase items sold for fundraising purposes by the committee. The entire amount paid for a ticket or item is considered a contribution.
Loans and loan endorsements
A nonconnected committee may loan money to a candidate’s committee, or it may endorse or guarantee a bank loan to the candidate’s committee. The loan or the amount endorsed or guaranteed counts as a contribution to the extent that the loan remains outstanding.
Example of loan made as contribution by nonconnected PAC
A multicandidate committee guarantees half the value of a $10,000 loan from a bank to a candidate’s committee, thereby making a $5,000 contribution to the candidate toward the next election. The candidate’s committee makes monthly repayments on the loan in amounts of $1,000.
Those payments reduce the committee’s contribution by $500 each month (i.e., half the repayment). As the outstanding balance is reduced, the committee may make new contributions to the candidate for the same election, as long as the committee does not exceed the overall $5,000 limit.
Affiliation and contribution limits
When two or more committees are affiliated, they share a single limit on the contributions they make to candidates and other political committees. A single limit also applies to the aggregate contributions a person makes to committees affiliated with each other.
Reporting additional information on contributions made to candidates
Further information is required when itemizing a contribution to a candidate committee on Schedule B. List the candidate’s name and the office sought (including the state and, if applicable, congressional district). When itemizing a contribution or loan to a candidate committee, specify the election for which the payment was made by checking the appropriate category in the election designation box.