Political Law Firm / Republican Lawyers
At Oberheiden P.C., we help politicians, campaigns, contributors, lobbyists, and others ensure that their political activities remain compliant with all of the complex and constantly-changing rules that apply. Our Republican lawyers can also help you stay ahead of new developments, and we can help you institute an internal compliance program that demonstrates your commitment to compliance.
Political activities in the United States are subject to an inordinate number of complex laws and regulations; and, in today’s world, mistakes can be incredibly costly. Transgressions can quickly make the rounds on social media; and, if picked up by local or national news outlets, they can potentially bring your political campaign or career to an end.
From running a political campaign to serving in an elected office, and from supporting candidates to lobbying legislators for change, all types of political activities are heavily governed. Laws, regulations, and rules at all levels of government can apply, and avoiding miscues requires a comprehensive understanding of how all of these various sources of authority apply to your specific political activities.
While the concern of negative publicity is very real in the political sphere, the consequences of noncompliance can also be far more severe. Statutory violations can lead to civil or criminal enforcement action, with potential penalties including substantial fines and federal imprisonment.
A Republican Political Law Firm with a National Presence
At Oberheiden P.C., we provide representation for candidates, officials, lobbyists, political organizations, and private entities in all political law matters. We provide comprehensive compliance representation, and we offer our representation on a nationwide scale.
Our Republican lawyers have represented public officials and other political clients in a broad range of matters. If you are running for office, if you are in office, or if you are seeking to finance a campaign or exert influence in Washington D.C., we can use our extensive experience to assist you. With several attorneys who have prior experience in the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and U.S. Attorney’s Offices around the country, we offer invaluable governmental insights for individuals and entities that are faced with the burdens of political law compliance.
We serve our political clients in all aspects of local, state, and federal compliance. In many cases, political activities will have legal implications at all three levels, and avoiding costly and embarrassing oversights requires the ability to quickly assess all of the legal implications of proposed political activities. At Oberheiden P.C., we work closely with our clients throughout their political efforts to ensure that they are able to remain compliant in the areas of:
Under federal law, corporations are prohibited from contributing funds directly to political campaigns for federal office. This blanket prohibition has existed in the United States for more than a century, and the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (also known as the McCain-Feingold Act) outlawed “soft money” contributions to the national Republican and Democratic parties in 2002. Corporate entities are also prohibited from encouraging their officers or employees to contribute to political campaigns, and reimbursing officers and employees for their campaign contributions is likewise a federal offense.
However, under Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, corporate entities can use their coffers to fund political communications. In order to lawfully finance political communications, corporations must ensure that their contributions are structured appropriately, and all aspects of all pertinent transactions should be meticulously documented. At Oberheiden P.C., we assist corporations, political campaigns, and political candidates with these and other aspects of campaign finance compliance, including (but not limited to):
- Political fundraising activities and events
- Financing of campaign events (including “meet and greets”)
- Candidate travel
- Political communications not financed by corporate entities
- Appropriate use of disclaimers
- Federal Election Commission (FEC) and state campaign finance filings
- Political Action Committee (PAC) compliance
Candidates, elected officials, contributors, lobbyists are all subject to legally-enforceable ethical obligations with regard to their political activities. Candidates and elected officials must ensure that all of their political activities remain fully transparent and full above board, while contributors and lobbyists must avoid activities that involve the perception of undue influence. The Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995 (LDA)and the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2007 (HLOGA) are key federal statutes in this area, but they are by no means the only source of ethical responsibility for political actors and activities.
Many, but not all, of the ethical rules within the political law arena have to do with gifts and financial contributions. As a result, campaign finance compliance and ethical compliance are closely intertwined. At Oberheiden P.C., we assist our clients with ethical compliance matters including:
- Clearance of gifts, financial contributions, and travel
- Disclosure compliance for gifts, financial contributions, and travel
- Employee compensation, reimbursements, and other financial matters
- Conflicts of interest
- Post-employment matters
Internal Governance and Compliance
We assist corporations, PACs, political campaigns, and other clients with all aspects of internal governance and compliance. Instituting an effective internal compliance program is essential to instilling a culture of compliance among your organization’s employees and volunteers, and providing training and resources can significantly reduce the risk of both intentional and inadvertent compliance violations. We help our clients develop internal governance controls and implement compliance policies and procedures that address matters including:
- Corporate structuring and governance
- Corporate meetings, resolutions, and recordkeeping
- Disclosure compliance
- Employee and volunteer training
- Employment compliance
- Ethics compliance
- Financial matters
Under the Honest Leadership and Open Government Act of 2007, the penalties for violating the Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995 have been increased significantly. Civil monetary penalties now stand at $200,000 per violation, and criminal prosecution under the HLOGA and LDA can result in up to five years of federal imprisonment. As a result, the risks of non-compliance for lobbying organizations and individual lobbyists are greater than ever, and this means that compliance needs to be a top priority.
We assist lobbying organizations and lobbyists with all aspects of legal and regulatory compliance, from meeting disclosure and filing requirements to strictly adhering to House and Senate rules. Our services also include providing representation with respect to:
- Lobbying Disclosure Act registrations
- Appropriate calculation of lobbying expenses
- Lobbying events and travel
- Local, state, and federal legal and regulatory compliance
- House and Senate rule compliance
Government contractors occupy a unique space in the political realm. Not only are they in a position to directly benefit from governmental activity, but they are also in a position in which they have the opportunity, if desired, to offer benefits to elected government officials.
Pay-to-play laws are designed to ensure that government contractors do not unduly influence government officials or unduly benefit from their contracts with the government. These laws prohibit, limit, and require disclosure of campaign contributions and gifts made by government contractor, as well as those made by their officers, board members, owners, employees, and PACs. Pay-to-play laws also apply to prospective government contractors that are seeking to win bids. Our services in the pay-to-play realm include representation of government contractors, contract bidders, political candidates, and government officials with respect to:
- State and federal pay-to-play law compliance
- Pay-to-play disclosures and certifications
- Development and implementation of pay-to-play compliance programs
- Clearance of campaign contributions that raise possible pay-to-play concerns
- Government contract review and negotiation
We represent political parties, PACs, civil rights organizations, and government entities with regard to local, state, and federal redistricting matters. Redistricting is a particularly unique and nuanced aspect of political law, and redistricting efforts can have various statutory and constitutional implications. We help our clients develop plans for seeking redistricting that comply with all pertinent sources of legal authority, and we assist clients with executing strategies for opposing redistricting efforts as well. Our services in this area include:
- Legal advice and counseling regarding redistricting and reapportionment efforts
- Addressing issues pertaining to voter identification and vote dilution
- Addressing issues pertaining to polling places, early voting sites, and malapportionment
- Voting Rights Act and election law compliance
- National Voter Registration Act and Help America Vote Act compliance
Campaign finance, lobbying, and other political activities involve a host of complex state and federal tax issues. We represent non-profit political organizations with regard to maintaining their tax-exempt status, and we help other entities and individuals make safe and strategic decisions about minimizing their overall tax liability. When possible, our lawyers work with our clients to identify potential tax issues and tax opportunities proactively so that our clients can avoid unwanted scrutiny while taking full advantage of the advantages that are available. In the area of political tax compliance, our services include:
- Internal Revenue Code (IRC) Section 527 compliance
- IRC Section 501(c) tax exemption compliance
- Federal and state tax disclaimer requirements
- Federal and state tax filing requirements for PACs
- Appropriate accounting for gifts, political contributions, and lobbying expenses
Speak with a Republican Attorney at Oberheiden P.C.
If you need advice or representation with regard to any of the above, we encourage you to contact us to arrange a complimentary consultation with one of our political law attorneys. To schedule an appointment at your convenience, please call 888-680-1745 or tell us how to contact you online today.