Corporate Social Responsibility

Lobbying Disclosure Act of 1995

According to texbook authors of Effective Public Relations, lobbying has been one of the fastest growing specialties in public relations practice. Through lobbying activites, corporations attempt to influence legislation and regulations.

The Lobbying Disclosure Act (LDA) of 1995 was the first substantive reform in the laws governing lobbying disclosure in 50 years. The LDA significantly broadened the definitions of people and organizations that must register as lobbyists. It also established new registration and reporting requirements.

The LDA now requires that registration be done in the name of the organization with reports due semi-annually. Many predicted that the LDA would lead to an increase in disclosure of lobbying activities, in hopes of regaining public confidence in business in Washington.

Contained in the PRSA Member Code of Ethics, a scenario illustrating an example of ethical, as well as legal, misconduct for public relations practitioners related to lobbying is the following:

"A member entertains a government official beyond the legal limits and/or in violation of government reporting requirement."
For more information about the LDA, visit the
US Senate Lobbying Disclosure Act Guidance Page.

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