With the elections coming up you might be wondering how you can participate and contribute to your cause. It is important to know in which ways you are able to contribute your time during this campaign season.

The federal law has rules and regulations about who can and cannot donate and contribute to political campaigns in the United States on the federal, state, or local level. Only citizens of the United States and Legal Permanent Residents are allowed to donate money to a political party or campaign, as well as work for them.

Unfortunately, even if you have legal status of some sort like DACA, a U-Visa,  or have granted asylum, for example, and wish to donate money or work for compensation for a political campaign, you are not able. This does not mean you can’t help out, you are more than welcome to volunteer for no compensation for whatever campaign you had in mind, you just cannot be compensated or give money to the campaign.

There can be no money to or from a political party or campaign if you are a foreign national. A “foreign national” includes: foreign citizens (not ones that also have U.S citizenship), immigrants who are not lawfully admitted for permanent residence, foreign governments, foreign political parties, foreign corporations, foreign associations, and foreign partnerships.

 If any individual just listed above gives money to or receives money from a political party or campaign they are subject to FEC enforcement action, criminal prosecution, or both as well as the political party or campaign in question. So remember for your safety, unless you are a United States Citizen or a Legal Permanent Resident of the United States, there should never be an exchange of money between you and a political campaign and/or party.

Readers should consult the Federal Election Campaign Act and Commission regulations, advisory opinions, and relevant case law for additional information.