Frequently Asked Questions
Who should register?
1) Are there any obligations for Designated Public Officials? Do they have to register
2) My organisation is 100% run by volunteers – no paid staff at all. If we contact a DPO, are we lobbying?
3) If I am a member of a representative body and they ask me to lobby my local TD, who is responsible for submitting returns?
4) Do I have to register before I meet with a DPO?
5) When a person undertakes lobbying activities on behalf of a client, who registers and submits a return – the client or the professional representative?
6) I am not a professional “lobbyist”, but I do communicate with Designated Public Officials on behalf of my client. Do I have to register?
7) If an organisation has both an “umbrella” group and smaller regional arms, who registers?
8) If a charity registers as a lobbyist, will they lose either their charitable status or charitable tax exemption?
9) Do the following local authority matters count as lobbying?
10) What are the type of implementation matters or matters of a technical nature which are not regarded as lobbying?
11) Is communication between a political party and its elected representatives (DPOs) lobbying?
Methods/venues of communication
12) If I have an informal conversation with a Designated Public Official, is that lobbying?
13) Does the Act apply to communications that take place outside of Ireland?
14) Do social media posts count as lobbying?
15) If I make a speech at an event, and a TD happens to be in the audience, am I lobbying?
16) If a DPO contacts me, and I didn’t initiate the contact, does that count as lobbying?
17) Are public consultation processes exempt?
18) If I issue a public document (a press release, an annual report etc.), is that lobbying?
19) What is indirect lobbying?
20) What is the difference between grassroots communications, mass communications and targeted communications?
21) How do I know if someone is a DPO?
22) Are communications between members of Working/Expert Groups lobbying activities?
23) Are communications carried out by a body corporate (commercial or non-commercial state body) to a Government Minister or Government Department exempt?
24) Will the list of DPOs be expanded in the future?
25) During an election campaign, do TDs and Ministers continue to be Designated Public Officials?
Content of Returns
26) Does the fact that a Designated Public Official’s name appears on a lobbying return mean that they agree with the position of the person lobbying them?
27) Are there any penalties if I don’t register?
28) What happens if I have registered in error or submitted a return of lobbying activities when I was not required to do so?
29) What happens if I am registered and I haven’t carried out any lobbying activities during a reporting period?
30) What happens if I am no longer carrying out lobbying activities