R-1 Electronic Filing System (REFS)
 
FAQ's
 

Software and System Requirements

What are the minimum system requirements?
  • PC Type computer system
  • Disk Space: 20MB or more free space;
  • CD Reader/Writer;
  • Operating System: Microsoft Windows® XP Professional SP-2 is preferred.
  • Related Software: Microsoft Access 97 or higher is requested, not required.

How do I get the R-1 Electronic Filing System (REFS) software?

If you would like to participate in the electronic filing program you must attend one of our training sessions in Trenton to get the software.

 

General Questions

Why do I need to attend a training session?

To receive the software and extensive training to maximize your comfort level with electronic filing.

Am I obligated to use the REFS software once I receive it and the REFS training?

No, unless you are a legislative candidate who raises and spends, or expects to raise or spend, in excess of $100,000 for the election.

If I have been filing paper reports, can I now file electronically for the same election?

Yes, the program has a built-in feature for “mid-stream filers,” those candidates or committees who previously filed paper reports for the same election and now want to file electronically. Before entering any contribution or expenditure information, you will enter the cumulative-to-date and closing balance information from your last paper report in order for you to move forward electronically. See Mid-Stream Filers in the REFS Help files.

Is help available for REFS filers?

Extensive help files are available within the program. If you need to speak with someone our help desk personnel are available during business hours at (609) 292-8700 or Toll Free within New Jersey at 1-888-313-ELEC (3532).

 

Registration Number and PIN

Who in the campaign needs a registration number and PIN?

Any member of your committee who would normally sign a report must complete and submit an application to receive a registration number and PIN. These numbers, when combined together take the place of your signature and when entered on an electronic form will return the signer's name. The signers may include the candidate(s), treasurer, deputy treasurer, organizational treasurer and/or chairperson.

What do I do if I lost or forgot my registration number and/or PIN?

DO NOT apply for a new number if you lost or forgot your registration number or PIN. Contact the Commission's Help Desk by calling (609) 292-8700 or Toll Free within New Jersey at 1-888-313-ELEC (3532) during regular business hours and after answering the security question your registration number and PIN will be given to you.

 

Candidate (Committee) Identification Number

You mention a CID number - what is it and who needs it?

The candidate/committee identification number is used by ELEC to identify each candidate and joint candidates committee in an election; this is NOT your registration number and PIN. This number tells us what office you are running for; the election district, county or municipality you are running in; your political party affiliation if applicable; election type (P = primary, G = General, etc.) and the election year. Since this number is assigned by ELEC it will change from election to election. The REFS program uses the CID to create and store your information.

Where/how do I get my Candidate (or Committee) Identification Number (CID)?

Your CID will be given to you at the initial REFS training session. To request your CID for your next or future election contact the Compliance Division at (609) 292-8700 or Toll Free within New Jersey at 1 888-313-ELEC (3532). DO NOT create your own CID to file reports. If the CID does not match the CID we have on file, you may not be credited with a timely filing.

What do I do if I lost or forgot my CID#?

Please read, “Where/how do I get my Candidate (or Committee) Identification Number (CID)?” above, if you need your CID.

 

Using the Software/Completing/Sending My Report

If I have filed previous ELEC reports via diskette can I now file via the internet?

Yes, REFS version 3.4.0 and higher will allow you to file via the internet. If you don’t have this version of the software you must attend one of our training sessions to obtain the upgraded software and file via the internet.

If the campaign will be holding several fundraisers during the filing period will I be able to enter the contribution and expenditure information as I receive it?

Yes, the information is saved as you enter it. There is no need to save your contribution and expenditure information to enter all at once it can be entered as you progress through the filing period.

How do I sign an electronically filed report?

You need to complete an application for a ELEC Registration Form Registration Number and Personal Identification Number (PIN). These numbers, when combined together take the place of your signature.

How do I know the Commission has received my report when I file via the internet?

A receipt is generated with a date and time stamp that you should print and keep with your records. Additionally, we ask that you send an email to efiling@elec.state.nj.us after you have received your E-Filing receipt in order for us to cross-check reports received against reports expected to be filed electronically through the REFS program.

Can I amend/change my filing once it has been sent over the internet?

Yes, if you find you need to change a previously filed report you have the ability to amend using the REFS software.

Why can’t I see my filed report immediately?

As with paper reports filed with the Commission electronic reports are released within our normal disclosure time period.

 

Help

Is help available for REFS filers?

Extensive help files are available within the program. If you need to speak with someone our help desk personnel are available during business hours at (609) 292-8700 or Toll Free within New Jersey at 1-888-313-ELEC (3532).

 
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Electronic Filing is unavailable between 2:30-3:30 am for
routine overnight maintenance.