Search Legislation

Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000

Section 118 and Schedule 14 : Special restrictions on referendum expenses by permitted participants

215.Subsection (1) introduces Schedule 14 which imposes limits on referendum expenses incurred by permitted participants. The limits for participants in a UK-wide referendum are set out in paragraph 1(2) of Schedule 14.

216.The limits are as follows:


for a designated umbrella organisation - £5 million


for a registered political party a sum based on the percentage of the vote secured by the party at the previous parliamentary general election, namely:

Percentage of UK vote

Permitted limit


More than 30%5
20 – 30%4
10 – 20%3
5 – 10%2
Less than 5%0.5

other permitted participants - £0.5 million.

217.If a referendum were held under the provisions of Part VII during the course of the Parliament elected in 1997, the permitted limit for the main political parties would be as follows: Labour (43.2% of the vote) £5 million; Conservative (30.7%) £5 million; Liberal Democrat (16.8%) £3 million. All other political parties secured less than 5% of the UK-wide vote and would consequently have a limit of £500,000.

218.Paragraph 2 of Schedule 14 provides for the expenses limits in a referendum which is not a UK-wide referendum to be determined by order. Subsection (2) of section 118 makes it an offence for a permitted participant to incur referendum expenses in excess of the permitted limit.

Back to top


Print Options


Explanatory Notes

Text created by the government department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Public Acts except Appropriation, Consolidated Fund, Finance and Consolidation Acts.


More Resources

Access essential accompanying documents and information for this legislation item from this tab. Dependent on the legislation item being viewed this may include:

  • the original print PDF of the as enacted version that was used for the print copy
  • lists of changes made by and/or affecting this legislation item
  • confers power and blanket amendment details
  • all formats of all associated documents
  • correction slips
  • links to related legislation and further information resources