Appendices

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Appendices

Appendices:
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Appendix Y
COMPLAINT PROCESS

If you believe someone has violated the Michigan Campaign Finance Act (MCFA) you may file a written complaint with the Department of State. A form for filing a complaint may be obtained out Website. The complaint form must include all of the following:

  • Your name, address and telephone number.
  • The alleged violator’s name and address.
  • A description in reasonable detail of the alleged violation, including the section or sections of the MCFA you believe were violated, an explanation of how you believe the MCFA was violated, and any other pertinent information.
  • Evidence that supports your allegations.
  • A certification that:
    To the best of your knowledge, information, and belief, formed after a reasonable inquiry under the circumstances, each factual contention of the complaint is supported by evidence.
  • However, in addition, if after a reasonable inquiry under the circumstances, you are unable to certify that certain specifically identified factual contentions of the complaint are supported by evidence, you may also certify that:
    To the best of your knowledge, information, or belief, there are grounds to conclude that those specifically identified factual contentions are likely to be supported by evidence after a reasonable opportunity for further inquiry.
  • Your signature immediately after the certification or certifications.

If you wish to have your complaint considered, it must include all of the required information. The Department may dismiss your complaint if any item is not included, or if the complaint is determined to be frivolous, illegible, or indefinite. If the complaint is dismissed, both you and the alleged violator will be notified.

The completed form should be sent to the following address:

Michigan Department of State
Bureau of Elections
Richard H. Austin Building – 1st Floor
430 West Allegan Street
Lansing, Michigan 48918
(517) 373–2540

If your complaint meets the above requirements, the Department will notify the alleged violator that a complaint has been filed. The notification will include a copy of your complaint. The alleged violator will have an opportunity to file a response. You will have an opportunity to file a rebuttal to any response. You and the alleged violator will receive periodic reports about the actions taken by the Department concerning your complaint.

If the Department finds no reason to believe that your allegations are true, your complaint will be dismissed. If the Department finds that there may be reason to believe your allegations are true, the Department must attempt to correct the violation or prevent further violations by informal methods such as a conference, conciliation, or persuasion, and may enter into a conciliation agreement with the alleged violator.

If the Department is unable to correct the violation or prevent further violations informally, an administrative hearing may be held to determine whether a civil violation of the MCFA has occurred, or the matter may be referred to the Attorney General for the enforcement of criminal penalties. An administrative hearing could result in the assessment of a civil penalty. Such a hearing would be conducted in accordance with the Michigan Administrative Procedures Act. An order issued as a result of such a hearing may be appealed to the appropriate circuit court.

WARNING: Section 15(8) of the MCFA (MCL 169.215) provides that a person who files a complaint with a false certification is responsible for a civil violation of the MCFA. Under section 15(14) of the MCFA (MCL 169.215), the Secretary of State may require a person who files a complaint with a false certification to:

• Pay the Department some or all of the expenses incurred by the Department as a direct result of the filing of the complaint.
• Pay the alleged violator some or all of the expenses, including, but not limited to, reasonable attorney fees, incurred by that person as a direct result of the filing of the complaint.
• Pay a civil fine of up to $1,000.00.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

RULINGS AND INTERPRETIVE STATEMENTS

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Page last modified on November 09, 2017, at 03:07 PM