Expenditures for State-Federal Relations Lobbying

Ron Book

September 2, 2022

Expenditures for State-Federal Relations Lobbying

In this article, you’ll learn how to correctly report your lobbying activity and expenses to the IRS. State-Federal Relations Lobbyists may be employed by an organization, company, or individual for financial or other compensation. This article also covers reporting requirements, safe harbor, and contact information. These three areas are critical for the success of your lobbying campaign. In addition, these guidelines will help you comply with the law if you’re planning to lobby state lawmakers.


In determining whether lobbying expenses are deductible, consider the amount of money spent on the activity. The person is considered a lobbyist if the move amounts to more than $2,000 in a calendar quarter. Lobbying expenses may be claimed only when the costs are related to communicating with elected or appointed officials, federal, State, local agencies, and nonprofit corporations.

If you are a public official, you must notify the Governmental Relations Office before engaging in lobbying activities. Lobbying activities can include meeting with legislators and attending receptions and dinners. A typical hospitality expense to legislators is 5% of the total of $1,000. After each contact, you must submit a Federal Lobbying Contact and Expense Reporting Form. The information from this form will be used to prepare a quarterly Federal Lobbying report.

For federal lobbying expenses, you must register as an organization. A lobbyist must be registered with the Federal Election Commission to lobby on behalf of a client. An affiliated organization includes an organization that contributes more than $500 to lobbying activities quarterly and actively participates in planning or supervising such activities. In addition, an affiliated organization consists of a person or entity that employs or retains a lobbyist. In-house lobbyists are also covered.

Contacts State-Federal

State-Federal Relations Lobbyists are required to report their contacts with covered officials. A single lobbying contact may include multiple communications with a covered official. For example, an employee of Corporation “C” may contact a Covered Official “A” in the morning and then telephone Covered Official “B” in the afternoon.

If an employee of the University engages in federal lobbying activities, they must report it to the Vice President for Government Relations and Advocacy. If an employee participates in lobbying without prior approval, the movement must be consistent with the priorities of the University. These priorities are set by the President and the Office of Government Relations and Advocacy.

State-Federal Relations Lobbyists may be employed by an organization, company, or individual for financial or other compensation. A typical lobbyist spends at least 20 percent of their time lobbying for a single client. Their client may be an individual, a corporation, a foundation, a labor organization, or a group. A state or local government may also be a client.


If you’re lobbying for a State-Federal Relations agency, you’ll have to report all expenses, including your salary and personal expenses, to the State. In addition, you must also register costs related to your office overhead. Expenditures for State-Federal Relations Lobbying can include fees associated with your office space, travel, and meals.

Lobbying activities include all contact with government officials, preparation for these contacts, and background work. Lobbying activities are required to be reported, and the Office of Federal Relations may contact you to determine if you should say. To report expenses related to lobbying activities, you must identify each client, if applicable.

For example, a trade association pays $5,000 to an outside lobbying firm for its lobbying efforts. The trade association should include the payments to the lobbying firm in their total lobbying expenses. In addition, if the trade association is separately registered under the LDA, lobbying firms must be reported on their quarterly activity reports.

Safe harbor State-Federal

The Lobbying Disclosure Act requires an entity to report its lobbying expenses. It specifies the definition of an eligible registrant and permits the use of IRC definitions in determining whether to file a report. The Act also requires an entity to disclose its interest in a general issue area and specific issues.